The great unknown – the depths of our minds

We have some knowledge of how our physical brain works, things that go wrong can often be fixed, you can have treatment that works.

But thinking, mental processes and mind matters like consciousness, intuition, feelings are in the realm of speculation, guesswork, conjecture and worse: We are not sure what goes on. We can see what happens, but we are unable to explain it, we don’t know the mechanism by which it works.

We can not control our minds fully, some people are better than others at that, but things keep entering our minds, we develop sympathies, ideas, dislikes, we become glad and sad, we become depressed without being able to control it .. and so on. Psychologists can help, but surely they are often in deep waters.

Many people work at understanding their own minds, some meditate or do the Works (ref. Gurdjieff), some have therapy, do dream interpretation …many techniques are used to find understanding and calm us. More people should really do this kind of work – reflecting on the state of your mind.

Dreams are said to contain information or knowledge entering your mind when you are asleep. Often we remember our dream, so that we can think about it, even interpret it. The reason for dreams and their significance is really unknown, but our mind is obviously working when we are asleep. It has been suggested that dreams are a cleaning of our memories, a process of stabilizing your mind.

Dreams are very personal, they belong only to you, although simultaneous dreaming in several persons shall have been observed.  Dreams seem to just happen, there is no starting and stopping mechanism involved.

Many questions have been raised about the working of the mind when we sleep:

  • what is the intellectual activity involved, or is it just feelings?
  • can we do things in dreams that we otherwise can not?
  • are we getting access to hidden worlds in our sleep?
  • do dreams warn us of physical changes like illness? Are they warnings?
  • why do we have nightmares after scarying or terrifying experiences? Why is the mind working so hard?
  • what is lucid dreaming, or the state of the mind where we know we are dreaming?
  • is death the relation of dreams – is there a state that we enter when we die?
  • do dreams give rise to enhanced abilities? Do we become more creative?

Induced dreams was once a technique used by many both in Asia, Europe, the Americas. This is now frowned upon, but consciously entering into dreams was once part the healing rituals in many civilizations, used for thousands of years. May be we have lost some knowledge here. We have taken that away without providing something instead. We are scientific people, but what do we do when science can not tell? Both Hindus, Buddhists, American Indians, the Finns had and still have their rituals – but don’t show it off – and the Greeks used healing and wellness rituals based on induced dreams. They even went into dark places, the underworld to achieve healing.

Psychology has many big names – Freud, Jung – but the science is difficult – and often shut down for some reason. Many have tried to provide structure  and analysis, e.g, the four archetypes of dreams.

Mystics claim that dreams link us to the evolution of humans, to the cosmos, even Einstein claimed a love for the mysterious that he did not understand. Many cultures have people with understanding of our minds, they can work wonders, they find and use hidden forces.

Mind control has been a big theme during wars: how to get people to tell the truth, how to get confessions, mass coercion. Using drugs and microchips to control people’s mind is are recurring themes. Using persuasion, sermons, nationalism to induce certain modes of thinking, to soften people have been talked about over the years. Experiments with drugs to alter peoples mind are going on, huge amounts of mind drugs are used today, we know the effects of many and people are constantly inventing and trying out new ones.

Advertising has also used mind control – still are? – the depth men – to make us buy things. There are even bigger questions about mind control of societies – propaganda in many forms, silent, slow, making us follow, taking us over, calming us.

The themes touched upon here are big and important for the future of mankind. There is obviously a vast amount of knowledge to be had – for individuals, for societies, for humanity. The writings about controlled societies are still valid, so better watch out – you may not believe you are manipulated till it is late.

Mind matters are complex, but we must search for the unknown, the mysterious. The fact that science right now is of no use must not stop us from trying to improve our understanding – so go seek understanding. It is silly to stop people from searching – the search in itself could be very exciting.

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