Finding a Path Through the Depths of the Mind
It’s seldom easy to really get a solid idea of what’s going on in our own unconscious. We’re often driven by impulses and ideas that we’re not even fully aware of. People like to assume that they’re beings of pure logic. That while we feel emotion, it’s more in the sense of an accessory to our essential core being.
But cognitive science has long since disproven this assumption. In reality our minds are a complex and often chaotic mix of opposing forces. Our unconscious mind and conscious thought interact in ways that’s often difficult for us to really understand. Often times our decision-making process is little more than an illusion. We might think that we’re weighing options and going with a particular choice. But in reality, our unconscious mind has made the choice, we’ve started acting on it, and only then rationalized it.
This makes it incredibly difficult to really know ourselves. There are ways around the problem though. Therapy is obviously one of the best ways to get into the depths of our unconscious. Meditation is another method by which many people have been able to find insight into their unconscious. There are also methods by which people have combined both of these approaches into a singular whole.
For example, some therapists make use of something like a sand tray therapy kit. This is especially useful for situations involving children. Sand is often used with some forms of mindfulness or active meditation. However, this concept is usually too much for children to make proper use of. But what kids can do is play with sand.
Playing with sand is obviously quite different from either therapy or meditation. But the real benefit comes from using active direction at the same time. A therapist would set up a scenario for the child to interact with. This will often be accompanied by small figures to use within the sand. This sets up something that could be considered as a cross between roleplaying and meditation.
The child will lose himself in the game. But the therapist can direct how that experience proceeds in order to help work through or discover underlying issues he might not be aware of. This gets past some of the more difficult aspects of a child’s approach to life.
No matter what type of therapy one uses with a child there’s going to be some unavoidable issues. As we’ve seen, it’s not even easy to understand what’s going on in our own adult minds. A child lacks the experience with self-analysis that adults take for granted. This makes an already difficult endeavor even harder.
But an approach which keeps the child’s unique worldview in mind can bypass many of these problems. It’s important to keep in mind that a child often lives in his imagination. This can actually make it easier to highlight unconscious or subconscious issues. But to do so one needs to actually consider how they view the world. Trying to force a child into a more adult way of interacting will often throw away any progress rather than helping.