The human brain contains approximately 100 billion neurons. The connections between neurons are called synapses, and there are about a trillion of them in the brain. The number of people who have ever lived on earth is also approximately 100 billion according to the latest calculations, and quite possibly the number of connections between living and non-living people may be as many as the number of synaptic connections in the brain.
Why am I talking about this? I would like to use a model of the brain to explain how the family unconscious works. I promised you an article on the family unconscious last time.
So imagine an organism that looks schematically like a human brain. We could call it the central brain of humanity. Its surface is made up of neurons - people who have a functional body shell, i.e. they live, they perceive the senses of the surrounding - external world. We will now call them surface neurons. We can think of them as such branched off spurs, spurs of a family tree.
Living people have their own consciousness, but also a very strong component that "pulls" them in a certain direction, this component we call the unconscious.
What is the unconscious? I believe that consciousness is a subset of the unconscious. The unconscious contains not only everything we consciously perceive, but also what we are not aware of ( e.g. subliminal information). Consciousness peeks out of the iceberg of the unconscious as a kind of tip. Thus, consciousness perceives only the world above the surface, but the unconscious can hold everything.
In addition to the conscious perception of the world around us (which spontaneously and automatically becomes a part of the unconscious) we also put away into the unconscious - we displace our painful emotional experiences and some wishes, which is a kind of defense of our conscious self. These components are then no longer accessible to the conscious mind (they slip below the surface).
We now return to the original model of the central brain of humanity. As I have already stated, beneath its surface are neurons that represent generations of ancestors already dead. They no longer have any conscious component, only an unconscious one.
The family unconscious is then understood as the connection of the unconscious of individuals through their parents (genetic nodes) and their ancestors. Individuals are thus unconsciously connected to their living and non-living relatives. Sometimes this connection is clearly evident, such as mother-child, siblings, or a particularly strong bond between twins. These connections go in the lines of the family tree and below the surface of the central brain. Generation after generation, layer after layer, the deeper we go, the greater and more complex the interconnectedness, an incredible labyrinth of neurons and synapses. In the lowest layers of this common central brain, we are almost all connected to each other because our genes come from just a few individuals (forefathers and foremothers). On the other hand, there are eight billion neurons (living individuals) on its surface - that is us, pulling the imaginary thread of unconsciousness of all previous generations behind us. On this thread we are therefore pulling fragments of the unconscious of our ancestors. What are these fragments? First of all, they are unprocessed traumas, experiences from the moments between life and death, experiences on the edge of human existence. From an evolutionary point of view, this is understandable and important; descendants should respond to life-threatening situations. But the family unconscious is probably not only the emotional remnants of traumas, but also certain patterns of behaviour, thinking and wishes. In fact, I think that the family unconscious in its deeper layers is also the collective unconscious as Jung understood it. These deeper realms include the so-called archetypes, the patterns common to the whole human family, going across time and cultures.
The unconscious is a very powerful phenomenon that addresses us even in dreams. It speaks to us in the language of symbols and I am convinced that it is trying to convey important information to us. If you learn to dream lucidly, you can try to enter into a dialogue with it. I think that the space we perceive in lucid dreams is the space inside the imaginary central brain of humanity, which we have access to along the lines of our family tree - the family unconscious.
Bc. Marketa Juristova/ 17.5.2022
Resources and sites on the topic:
Resource the picture