Human mind was one of the most discussed subjects at the hands of the ancient thinkers and philosophers. In those days, there was no clue about the working of nervous system and the role of the brain in the process of both the mental and physical activities of organism. Spiritualism was the order of the day. Spiritual leaders controlled every area of human existence. Their imaginations created several stories about human mind. Those stories explained that mind is a paranormal substance; mind dwells outside the human body. Mind is product of psyche; Psyche is soul. Mind connection with soul ended in a new branch of study called psychology.
By the dawn of the twentieth century, renowned psychologists started dictating that human mind is a storage tank containing different levels for controlling and executing thoughts and actions. In this context the most remembered name is that of the Viennese neurologist Sigmund Freud (1838-1936). Freud’s subjective ideas were very complex. He divided human mind into different parts, each part under different names like id, ego etal which ultimately found their way through conscious, subconscious and super conscious routes.
According to Freud, conscious mind is at the top of the level-ladder which is not capable of doing anything without the help of the subconscious mind. Subconscious mind controls and supervises the conscious mind. All thoughts, ideas and actions lie deep in the subconscious mind. All bad thoughts, sexual urges, disorderly ideas and feelings lie buried in the subconscious mind.
Sigmund Freud devised a shrewd mechanism to treat mental aberrations and disorders. For this he swam deep into the depths of the subconscious mind. He started the treatments in the beginning with the help of animal magnetism. He explained that all the human behaviors have an element of sexuality. Freud treated hundreds of mentally sick patients by cleaning the subconscious mind with the help of his magnetic force. Despite the truth being whatever it be otherwise, the saddest thing about the whole story expounded by Freud is that even today, Psychologists the world over follow the Freudian theory of subconscious mind to clear the debris out and to cure mental disorders.
During the thirties of the twentieth century, the physiological basis of mental activities leading to memory was exposed through exhaustive scientific experiments. The experimental works of Ivan Petrovich Pavlov and his colleagues, in this context, are well known to the world of science. Their research work scientifically proved that the phenomenon of mind is the working result of the central nervous system based on excitation and inhibition of the sensory centers in the brain. It was further proved that the excitation and the inhibition of the sense organs take place on account of the reach of stimuli from internal and external environs. The cognitive function of the central nervous system consists of sensations, perceptions, conceptions and judgment. Memory is recreated by and through the cognitive functions. The terminology of ‘Mind’ represents the resulting phenomena of cognitive functions carried out by the central nervous system.
It is well established fact that most of the phenomena which are in the dark can be empirically identified and understood provided the person who looks at the phenomena has the calibre to find the truth. Mind does not have different beds to rest; Mind need not be divided into different levels to cure mental disorders: Things and events occurred long back in time are not dumped in a non-existent subconscious mind. Temporary nerve connections called conditioned reflexes are responsible for retaining the memory, for deflecting the memory, for creating fears, for building worries and depressions. Therapy for these maladies lies in formation of external conditioned inhibition through suggestion. No search for subconscious mind is needed for the purpose; Psychologists don’t have to swim into the depths of the subconscious mind to find cure for mental debilities.
In sum and substance, embracing physiology of nervous activity relating to the formation of temporary nerve connections called conditioned reflexes is what is the proper approach to replace the imaginary subconscious mind and to find cures for mental disorders. It is high time that ‘subconscious’ mind disappeared for ever for the good of science and for the good of mental patients, all across.