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The Unconscious Essay

1341 words - 5 pages

Human beings believe that they live their life in a conscious manner; that they are aware of their surroundings and know what is going on around them at all times. Yet deeper analysis of the word conscious leads to a more confusing thought process than a human being may be able to grasp. The Personal and Collective Unconscious by Carl Jung believes that “the unconscious contains only those parts of the personality which could just as well be conscious and are in fact suppressed only through upbringing”(344). In a more simplistic form, he says that the human brain is actually a more unconscious thought process and that what the brain produces to be conscious can actually be described as unconscious. Francis Crick’s The General Nature of Consciousness agrees in the same way that “people are not conscious of all the processes going on in their heads”(405). Both of these scientists argue on the same side of the psychological debate that the average human belief of consciousness is not what it is thought to be.
     The other perspective on the debate is that the unconscious and conscious are to totally different aspects of our mind. Human beings do in fact live most of their lives in a conscious manner are some thing a scientist named K. Koffka believes. Koffka states that “the mind and that is specifically conscious, therefore everything mental must be thought of in terms of consciousness, even if be not conscious itself”(Koffka). If taken into great detail, Koffka is a firm believer that everything we say and do in a day is in total control of the conscious part of our mind. He does, however make clear that he also believes there is unconsciousness as well. “Therefore, when one found it necessary to go beyond consciousness in the description and exploration of the mind, one imagined the non-conscious one, fundamentally alike, that is, in all its aspects or properties with the exception of being conscious”(Koffka).
Jung makes a valid point in saying that what we believe to be conscious is actually what the unconscious describes to us. When going into great detail on the subject, our brain receives a message from our senses and then relays that information back to us. We believe that we have consciously created these thought processes. The real question is, did you actually stop and become unaware of your surroundings, consciously, thus becoming unconscious of your surroundings, and then proceeded to have your brain produce these responses? Jung states that “the unconscious contains all those psychic components that have fallen below the threshold, including subliminal sense perceptions”(344-345). The honest answer for most people would be no, and thus reinforcing the belief that our unconsciousness, at least, controls part of what we describe and believe to be conscious. This is a theory that both Jung and Crick believe in, and have written to great length on at support their own hypotheses.

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