these questions were based on the article
"The Conscious, Subconscious, and Unconscious, a New Look at an Old Metaphor."
This Week's Questions
[posed by Dave E.]
Do you know?
[Question 1] Could teachers purposely use meditative trance to create an openness in students to learning?
Didn't I answer your question with a "yes" though? Yes, I did. And in fact, the thing to keep in mind would be that one of the main reasons the Emergence group exists is to better develop these very kinds of interventions, especially in young children. In fact, I would love to see this become a specialty for you to focus on Dave; to focus on developing a comprehensive system in which teachers could use Emergence trance states to enhance and even heal their students' desire to learn, by helping these students to access in themselves the pre-injured state of consciousness.
By the way, If you'd like my help with this, you have but to ask.
Now as I think about it, it occurs to me that we very well might use purposely accessing the subconscious to extend the periphery of what we consciously sense. Perhaps this is all that is occurring in people who can see auras or can hear normally inaudible tones.
One the main things to remember here is that the idea that we have "five senses" is simply a model, not a fixed reality. What I mean is, there are people who hear colors and see music. Knowing this makes me wonder how much of our five sense is actually fixed. Perhaps, no where near as much as scientists tell us is true. And to be perfectly honest, I. myself, have, since I was a baby, seen light around people. As a therapist, I have often used my observations of this light to validate intuitive hunches about how the person is doing.
I have also often wondered what, in fact, I am really seeing, meaning, is what I am seeing really there, or is it just that my mind has developed a visual analogy for spiritual states? Fortunately, as the Jungian therapist, Roger Woolger says so aptly in his book, Other Lives, Other Selves, as therapists, we need not be "shackled" by our belief or disbelief. Why? Because he says, "for the therapist, there is another kind of truth, psychic truth; that which is real for the patient."
Obviously, this applies to Emergence Therapy as well. Not surprisingly, Woolger's book contained a number of ideas which were seminal to my development of Emergence Therapy.
I, myself, have experienced both these therapies and have indeed relived this very state. And while I am sure there would be much to be gained still from using both these therapies to revisit my pre-birth time, Emergence offers easier and more potent ways to make these very gains.
As an aside, I was greatly influenced in how I've developed Emergence Therapy by my experiences with both of these therapies. Indeed, at one time, I actually studied Past Life Regression Therapy briefly with Brian Weiss, and with others. And as I mentioned in the previous answer, these experiences were very seminal for me.
So do I believe in past lives? My answer might surprise you. In the sense that the ingredients which make us who we are as people are never originals, I believe these is some tie to past lives, perhaps similar in nature to Jung's archetypes and Collective Unconscious. More honestly stated though, I believe our births, deaths, and everything in between follow the same laws our physical world follows. Thus, I believe nothing in us ever gets created or destroyed, even by death. Where do we go then? I believe we, as individuals, dissolve in death into our component parts, returning in a sense, to some pre-birth state not unlike the idea of raw materials. I also believe that in some way, we get born out of these pools of raw materials, and in doing so, carry with us randomly associated bits of other peoples' conscious experiences.
If this is true, then this idea explains many, many human experiences, everything from deja vu and synchronicity to instances wherein people can appear to have lived a past life, such as in cases wherein they can speak another language. All this, of course, is conjecture, and simply serves as a way to let these inherently unanswerable questions rest in my mind, thereby freeing my creative energies for more personally pragmatic activities, such as making the world a better place for children.
[Question 4] Aren't we asking a lot of 7 year olds when we expect them to learn to read, write, add, and subtract at a time when they are first entering a stage wherein they must learn a sense of time?
What is important to remember here is that whenever a student feels like they will never finish an assignment, they are experiencing their current learning situation in a pre age-seven state. The clues? The words "always" and "never." These two words in particular always signify pre age-seven feelings in children and in adults.
Taken even further, in most cases, when students feel forced to finish or even to begin an assignment, they are also experiencing a pre age-seven state of consciousness. Know this feeling is the direct opposite of those experiences wherein students learn to love managing doing homework, in that students who love doing homework actually feel a freedom. Why? Because they can use after-seven time to self regulate that part of the learning process which previously had always felt forced. Forced by whom? Forced by any external authority, parent, teacher, even themselves. Or as Freud might have said it, forced by their superego.
Said in other words, prior to the age wherein students learn to experience historical time, they experience being asked to do learning assignments as that they are being forced to learn, especially with assignments that occur outside of the classroom.
When students learn to consciously witness time passing however, they begin to be able to self manage how and when they do these assignments, as opposed to needing them to be managed by someone else, some authority figure. This knowledge then opens up many more opportunities for growth, including that students can become able to gain both self confidence and self esteem from the many life skills they can now acquire through completing things on time.
[Question 5] Could it be that being asked to learn to read before age seven create an undo urgency in some of us? For instance, would it force students to try to learn read by a certain time, and at a certain unrealistic speed, something like a "follow the bouncing ball" experience of learning?
This then gives us clues as to where in people's development these injuries occurs; they occur in situations wherein children are forced to read aloud before they have learned to experience post age-seven time.
As to what we could do to help here, again, I would love to see you use the principles of Emergence to develop some news ways to help children to learn to love to read and even, to minimize their injuries in and around reading in the first place.
More over, we do, in many ways, hurt a whole lot less in those moments wherein we are blaming. After all, we are both releasing pent up energy and detaching from our personal experiences of aloneness.
This said, so what is wrong with blaming? Basically, that blame is both an energy dissipater and an energy creator. By this I mean, in our world, energy never dissipates without process, neither in the physical world nor in the human psyche. Thus, even when people have no sense they feel alone, the energy of this aloneness simply manifests elsewhere, in some alternate form.
Blame is one of these alternate forms. It is an alternate form of the energy of aloneness. Thus, whether it is the punishing blame of Layer 4, the Time-Limited Blame of Layer 3, or the Civilized Blame of Layer 2, all three of these blames are simply alternate forms of the energy of aloneness.
You might now ask, but doesn't expressing blame discharge this energy? The answer? Yes and no, and actually, if this is all that happened, blame would not be such a bad thing after all. The thing is, blame is not only a discharge. It more like a reinventing of the original pain. Thus, we could very much call blame, a "pseudo discharge."
In other words, while blame does release energy, this release is more that the original pain gets recreated in a new form than that it dissipates back into the natural world. In a sense then, all blame is a form of negative energy, in that the pain associated with it does not end. It simply gets eliminated and then replenished within the same experience.
Contrast this with the experience of having an Emergence wherein the energy which gets created is both positive and lasting. In other words, in an emergence, this blame energy actually gets reformed into love. In other words, whenever we emerge from one of our wounds, the negative energy we once felt compelled to expend as blame gets transformed into the positive energy of creativity. Moreover, feeling creative is always a delightful feeling, rather than a painful feeling. This is why we see delight as the only proof someone has healed.
As I've been saying then, blame is always painful, both to the person being blamed and to the person doing the blaming. What causes this pain is the distance which exists between the blamer and whomever they are blaming. In fact, since we cannot by nature be connected to anyone and at the same time, blame, whenever we blame, we are in the state of aloneness. Only we don't know it as we are programmed as humans to see blame as warranted or even justified and worse, as the solution to our wounds.
What I'm saying is, people cannot blame in a connected state. Thus, even when they don't feel it, if they are blaming, they are alone. So what keeps most people from noticing this? Start with the idea that all adults have an unconscious. This does not mean what is in the unconscious does not exist. It simply means that what is in there influences us but with little to no outward sign.
Translation. We get affected by our aloneness even when we fail to notice it exists. More important, blame, which is our natural response to aloneness, rather than relieve this aloneness, actually perpetuates it.
[Question 7] Won't "why something happened" and "what happened" overlap at times, no matter how we may try to separate them?
Obviously, this is a why logic, blaming insinuation, a demand for an explanation as to "why you did what you did" disguised as a "what happened" question.
The main thing to remember here is this. The word "why" is not the problem. It is what is behind this word that is the real problem. What I mean is, are you asking the person to explain themselves? Then you are blaming and the "why" is "why logic." However, if you are asking in order to learn more about human nature including about the nature of this person, then you are asking to learn, rather than to blame, and this request is very, very different.
What I'm saying is, if you are genuinely asking people "why they do what they do" in order to better understand their nature, then you are actually being kind. And loving. But if you are asking people to explain themselves, as in, asking them to prove to you that what they did was justified, then you are treating them as broken and flawed and guilty until proven innocent. And this, indeed, is "why logic."
[Question 8] In many ways, the elderly resemble babies as they close in on death. Does the developmental cycle of conscious, subconscious, and unconscious reverse in the latter stages of life as well?
As for my initial thoughts, from my own few observations of aging people (including my dad who is now in the process of dying), I believe we have it in us to continue to become more conscious as we age, but that most people go in the opposite direction, in that they detach more and more as they age. It is, after all, a terribly painful loss to become unable to manage one's life. Then again, if, as in my father's case, you can adapt and become more able to consciously accept help form others, then I think this person's courage turns this painful experience into a very meaningful experience.
Finally, I think the word to remember here is "meaningful." In fact, in another form, we use this word as one of the three variables in human consciousness; "meaning." Here, in more meaningful experiences, we are more conscious, while in less meaningful experiences, we are less conscious. Moreover, to answer your question more directly, I think if we can actually do as my father is doing, meaning, if we can learn to consciously accept help from others as we die, then we do, indeed, return to the state in which we experienced much of babyhood. However, if we cannot do this, then I think we simply gradually and painfully relinquish our very consciousness, perhaps even contributing to our own deaths.
At the very least then, in theory, we have some say over how this happens, and knowing our choices is, after all, the very essence of being conscious.
Hopefully this answers at least some of your question.