The Characters of the Subconscious


“You’re never sure if the illusion is real
You pinch yourself but the memories are all you feel.”

-In the Dark by Billy Squire


In 1961, voiceover superstar Mel Blanc, who voiced famous characters such as Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and Elmer Fudd, as well as many others, was severely injured in a car accident while driving home. In critical condition, Blanc fell into a coma and almost died. His son and wife were at the hospital for weeks, speaking to him and hoping for a sign he would recover, but he remained unresponsive. Doctors tried everything, but the situation seemed hopeless. One day, about two weeks after his accident, his neurologist decided to try something unconventional. Upon entering Mel’s room in the morning, he loudly asked, “How are you feeling today, Bugs Bunny?” The other nurses and doctors were shocked by his unethical behavior . . . until they heard a small voice respond from the hospital bed: “Myeeeeh . . . What’s up, Doc?” Although unable to speak or respond as himself, Mel was able to hear and answer as the characters he played. The doctor addressed Mel in his character names, including Tweety Bird, to which Mel responded as that character every time until he awoke from his coma and was once again personifying Mel Blanc. Our subconscious is a powerful fragment of our mind.

Even things we do not believe are causing us harm may be hurting us emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Without realizing it, we may be letting one of our “character’s” triggers or fears answer for us, instead of our inner self (soul) responding. Anyone who has endured an abusive relationship may have created characters as coping mechanisms while in survival mode. These characters take on the “fight, flight, or flee” qualities. If someone grew up in poverty, the character of “poverty consciousness” might come out, regardless of how much money they are currently making in their life. If someone has ever felt victimized, the character of “victim mentality” may show itself, even in situations that are not relevant. Mel’s characters were distinct. They had names and personalities, were easily definable, and were created for fun and entertainment.

Motives are not always evident with our characters, and we may be expressing characters that were created in hardship and strife. Oftentimes, our characters were created for self-preservation. At one time or another, they provided a sense of security, love, prosperity, or safety because they were born to aid us in struggle, trauma, or adversity. Unfortunately, as our life changes or progresses, these characters become out of place, even inappropriate. They are playing a role in a film that has ended. Alternately, they continue their lines, keeping us stuck in a movie reel from the past, unable to move forward or let go. Finding the root of these characters and allowing God to heal our wounds releases them, thus freeing us to live in the present. The characters and stories that play in our subconscious determine the reel that projects and manifests into our lives. When we heal and let go of the pernicious characters in our subconscious, we allow a new reel to play, allowing us to create the story and life we desire. In leaving the characters of our past behind, we can step into the role of a lifetime: the conscious reflection of the image and likeness of God and the reflection of our bright nature.

Excerpt from The Spiritual Archetypes.