Some of the biggest CEOs and successful entrepreneurs repeatedly talk about how important it is to harness the early morning hours to set your schedule or to mull over important issues. If you have the habit of waking before sunrise, you know that there is a certain quality about that time that allows your mind to be in a state of meditativeness. You have more clarity and are able to look at situations more objectively. Could this be because your mind is in an altered state?
The German physician and philosopher Ernst Platner officially coined the now well-known term “unconscious mind”. Psychological and philosophical thinkers like Freud, Jung, Paracelsus, Shakespeare, and Nietzsche have also always known that there is some kind of multi-level hierarchy to the human mind. Even the yogic system does not refer to the mind as just one entity but rather prefers to look at it as many different parts.
Most people are aware of their conscious mind which actively used to perform daily tasks but there are deeper, more powerful layers to the mind that are unconscious or subconscious. According to Mark Altschule, historian of psychology, “It is difficult—or perhaps impossible—to find a prominent psychologist or psychiatrist who did not recognize unconscious cerebration as not only real but of the highest importance.”
Just below the surface of your conscious mind is a dormant volcano of powerful thought energy just waiting to erupt. History has shown that people who have been able to tap into their subconscious mind have been able to produce timeless, highly-influential bodies of work.
Layers Of The Subconscious Mind
Your subconscious acts like a massive underground mental library. With you realizing it, the subconscious mind records and stores of your memories, habits, behaviors, programming, deep-seated emotions, and really everything that you have learned and experienced up to this point in your life. Experiments have shown that your mind is storing data even when you’re asleep. So you can imagine the sheer quantity of data that’s sitting in a part of your mind that you rarely access.
By regularly practicing meditation, you can intelligently dive in, navigate, and effectively use this vast reserve of information to your maximum advantage.
Filtering is a very important function because our conscious mind cannot deal with two-million bits of information we experience every waking second. It would be instantly overwhelmed, paralyzed by the sheer volume of data. The inbuilt filter of the subconscious mind effectively filters out all unnecessary information, ensuring only the most important and relevant bits of information make it to the surface.
Meditation is not a way to pass through the filter but also to make the filter more efficient. With meditation, you can train your mind to be a more precise, better quality, higher functioning data filter. Basically, this is what increasing your awareness or mindfulness is all about.
People who are engaged in creative fields like writing or designing are more likely to have experienced the power of the subconscious mind and its layers. When you get fully immersed in work that requires your to harness creative thought, like painting or idea generation, your conscious mind takes a backseat, allowing the super-creative deep-mind to surface. Remember the story of how Issac Newton discovered gravity as an apple fell when he was sitting under a tree? It was not the fall of the apple that sparked the idea. The apple was but a trigger or inspiration that sparked the discovery in a mind that was in a deep state of meditation.
Meditation is, in essence, the process of digging down into the depths of your mind. Session by session, your once inaccessible mind power becomes slowly available to your everyday waking consciousness.