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Subliminal 1: The New Unconscious

12/22/2012

Lays the stage, looking at the history of the unconscious, starting with Freud, all the way to the “New Unconscious” which, while discarding Freud’s unfalsifiable, pseudo supernatural ideas, still leaves a very large place for the unconscious mind in our actions. There is study after study of people making choices, or noting preferences, all while being influenced by factors that they not only were unaware of, but also denied the affect of after learning about. This calls into question much of the confidence we have in our own beliefs and decisions as rational and conscious.

Kindle Notes:

the new technologies of neuroscience are today enabling scientists to expose a deeper mental reality, a reality that for all of prior human history has been hidden from view. (108)

The upcoming chapters are an exploration of our evolutionary heritage, of the surprising and exotic forces at play beneath the surface of our own minds, and of the impact of those unconscious instincts on what is usually considered willed, rational behavior—an impact that is much more powerful than we have previously believed it to be.” (132)”many unconscious processes can never be directly revealed through the kind of self-reflection encouraged by therapy, because they transpire in areas of the brain not open to the conscious mind. (236)

Research suggests that when it comes to understanding our feelings, we humans have an odd mix of low ability and high confidence. (296)

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