Home Discussion Forum What does "secret recesses of our consciousness" mean?

What does "secret recesses of our consciousness" mean?

THis is the whole quote…
“Reading good literature is an experience of learning what and how we are, in our human integrity and our human imperfection, in our public image and in the secret recesses of our consiousness”
i basically get the rest of the quote except for the conciousness part. I dont really know what conciousness is or what the secret recesses imply… maybe that sometimes you have to escape… HELP!


  1. it is the parts of your thoughts or personality which other people do not see. Reading can help you learn about yourself, even about the parts of yourself you do not reveal to other people.

  2. Things your brain thinks about without you being actively aware of it.
    There are currently many thoughts going through your brain all at the same time. Some are expressible in words, some are feelings, some control your body, and they are all interlinked with each other. Only a small percentage of your thinking is the voice in your mind narrating your life as you live it. That small part is called your conscious mind. You weren’t aware of the last ten heartbeats your brain sent to your heart. Now that I mentioned it, you’re probably now more aware of your heart beating when you weren’t a second ago.
    Sometimes feelings and experiences get tucked away far enough back in your mind that you don’t consciously think about them anymore. If you ask someone to tell you everything that happened on their drive to work today, they probably can’t. Some things get summarized in your mind to such an extent that only shadows of feelings and thoughts remain. You might have had a wasp sting you and have forgotten all about it, but all that lingers in your mind is a phobia about insects. You wouldn’t be able to articulate why you fear insects, because you forgot the initial incident, but you have that strong feeling.
    Those are the dark recesses of your mind that the person was referring to. Sometimes these types of characteristics of human thought come out through literature. It can help us understand some of our innate instinctual feelings, forgotten memories, our fears and hopes, and other things that might be difficult to articulate.

  3. Hi. I like your question, but for another reason.
    First, I think the person was talking about the secrets that people keep. S/he was just being poetic in how it was said.
    I like your question because it is apparently a literature question, but you posed it in R&S.
    To me the “secret recesses of our consciousness” is a Very special thing.
    A person has things that they are not consciously aware of, that have ill effects on their behavior, or coping skills, etc. That is referred to as the sub-conscious.
    There are things that a person is not consciously aware of (sometimes) that affect them positively. They are a sort of super(above)-consciousness.
    This level of consciouness contains the, not just understanding, but Knowingness, that you are a spirit. It also contains the experience of those qualities that are of a spirit.
    It is, can be called, “the secret recesses of our consciousness”
    Thanks for asking it and
    All the best to you and yours.

  4. I think it means when you read something written by a good author, you might read something in the book that draws out of the recesses of your memory, something you read or saw or experienced at some time in the past. Something your concious mind had forgotten, but this piece of literature drew the memory out again.

  5. Consciousness is that part of our mind which is aware — the part that experiences being alive. A similar term is subjective experience.
    When Sigmund Freud invented the pseudo-science of psychoanalysis, he maintained that there is a part of ourselves which is aware, but doesn’t know it. Freud called this the subconscious. My hunch is that the “secret recesses of our consciousness” refers to what we “secretly” think of ourselves, our subconscious self image.
    Edit: We’ve known since William Harvey, about 1616, that the heart is a blood pump and has nothing to do with emotion or thinking. It’s so discouraging, four-hundred years later, in a discussion about the nature of consciousness, to read a description of the heart as the seat of the self. No wonder religion is so damn persistent! Old misinformation never dies — it’s just repeated, and repeated, ad nauseaum.


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