Posted by: Philip Carr-Gomm | November 4, 2007

Staggering out of the cave

In response to yesterday’s post Hennie commented:

“Isn’t that the old Masterpiece : to be conscious of the Unconscious; like the Baron von Münchhausen pulling himself out of the swamp by his own hair? Ambitious indeed…

On second thought it must be the other way around : to be unconscious of the Conscious, like the people in Plato’s cave. But what ignites the deed of turning to the light? Curiosity?”


That’s very interesting. At first thought it seems that the concept of using words to describe the indescribable is most equivalent to using the Conscious to try to express material that is in the Unconscious, but as Hennie suggests is there not also a way in which the Unconscious is the realm which contains the ‘Essential’ (and includes the Superconscious as well as Subconscious) and which is ultimately the source of articulation and expression and therefore yes, we are like Plato’s cave-people just becoming aware of the light outside and trying to talk about it (while many of our fellows are still hypnotised by the shadows on the cave wall).


In both ways of looking at it, we are talking about inhabiting the limen – the threshold between worlds and hence the connection between writing and spirituality – we drag the unthought out of the darkness of the cave into the light of expression.


  1. I’m not sure about the limen.

    Il faut lire Jacques Lacan.

  2. Ah, pauvre Jaques; n’y-etait-il plus qu’un ” tired heroe”?

  3. isn’t light only one of the others worlds ?
    Word and world… with “L” we fly in the sky.. or out of the world everyone must learn as a child to be “normal”.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: