Here and there, I’ve contemplated what makes things subconscious. If everything we experience arises in consciousness, what does it mean for something to be “subconscious”? I was reminded of this recently by a talk on Jungian Archetypes* and the “collective unconscious.”
How are subconscious influences stored and what makes them subconscious**?
There are several factors at play. Overall, the average person lacks internal clarity and is identified with the objects of experience. This limits perception and makes our experience very localized.
If we’re only vaguely aware of our various layers of being then they are inherently subconscious.
And yet, our localization provides no limitations on the stored impressions influencing our life choices and habitual responses.
When we awaken to ourselves as universal consciousness, the binding identification falls away, markedly expanding our conscious range. Spiritual practice also helps improve internal clarity. This often accelerates after awakening. It really helps to have a lot of the noise settle out.
But awakening in consciousness is not yet awake everywhere. Even if we know ourselves to be consciousness itself, it takes time for the intermediate layers to become known and thus no longer subconscious.
Moreover, the way we store past experiences has a big impact on what is conscious. Our history is not just stored in our energy fields but is also stored in time. It has what we might call a temporal phase or time signature.
The obvious example is past lives. Most people don’t remember them because they’re not “in phase”. Similarly, we can go through our entire energy field and clean everything out, only to later discover old junk that “wasn’t there” before. Where was it? In a different time.
“A different time” doesn’t mean somewhere or somewhen else. All of time and space are present right here, now. Just consider memory. You remember then now by browsing back through time, shifting your awareness to align with what you wish to recall.
Time is a quality of consciousness generated by the flow of the process of experience. As consciousness moves, the quality of time changes into another “phase”. This phase is not clock time or date but more a flavor of consciousness.
This is another aspect of why people describe healing like peeling an onion. We can have something arise in experience to be healed, process it and feel it’s done. Then have another layer of it show up to be cleared. The new aspect was related but may have been deeper or may have had a different time value than what we’d already cleared. As we expand clarity through both space and time, other values become conscious. We heal not just now but all of our time.
Just as a digital photo can have information about who, when and where it was taken, so too the energy impressions of experiences.
Those unresolved experiences are stored with 5 elements of Metadata:
The related soul, its way of storage in space, its storage in time, any charge we’ve associated with the experience, and any identification we have with it. We might call the last 2 the Vasanas and Samskaras – the parts we want to resolve & heal.
In the usual ‘as above, so below’, this is a reflection of the nature of consciousness itself. I’ve talked before about the three-fold nature of consciousness – observer, process, and object of observation. In Vedic terms, this is Rishi, Devata and Chhandas.
Cosmic Memory or Veda is recorded with those 3 pieces of Metadata. The rishi or cognizing seer, the initiating law of nature or devata, and the meter. The law of nature is what structures space. The meter is also known as the time signature.
As I’ve mentioned prior, Veda can be considered the blueprints of creation. It can be said that at a specific point in time, the appropriate rishi arises to cognize or enliven that law of nature in creation, leading to its next stage of evolution.
More locally, the patterns of time have a huge influence on the unfolding of our experience. We are not trapped by that but rather guided in our growth. How we understand and respond is what determines the consequences of the experiences and if we enjoy or suffer.
And how we respond has a lot to do with that extra subconscious junk – the charge and identification.
If we heal those, then memory simplifies down into a simple record. It ceases to be personal and burden us. It becomes merely a record of the hero’s journey.
*Jung observed 3 personality polarities. That lead to further research that lead to the deeper archetypes and the discovery of the 4th polarity. The 4 polarities lead to Myers-Briggs personality testing.
**I prefer subconscious to unconscious because these impressions can always be made conscious and are often just under the horizon of our awareness, hinted at in our experiences and intuition.