Freud talked about the mind like the body, as an energy system. The mind contains and directs its limited supply of energetic forces, and energy spent on one task leaves less energy for everything else. That’s why after taking an exam, I am exhausted. And, of course, this limited well makes multitasking very challenging. I am a strong believer in science and having hard evidence to prove a theory, but I also believe that there are some phenomena related to our perception that we have yet to understand, or even measure. I think that our perception of “reality” is just that, a perception, completely fabricated in the mind in response to a mixture of stimuli and forces that we might not be able to see and really don’t understand. Think about the blind spot in your vision due to the optic nerve exiting the back of the eye. There are no rods and cones there, yet your brain weaves the hole closed so you are not aware of it. Similarly, we adapt to the shadows cast by the intricate web of veins on the inside of our eyelids. Think of something like blind-sight, or the idea that damage to the part of the brain responsible for seeing can render someone blind, but they are still able to reach for and perceive objects in a mysterious way. Think about how texture, color, depth, spatial aspects, and vision are controlled by different parts of the brain, but some inner monkey puts it all together, and tricks us that we have one vision, solitary in our perception.

But back to this energy. It can be focused, released, or blocked, and if you block it, it will simply find release through the path of least resistance. And we find pleasure in the release of this energy, because it is a release of tension. So let’s say you feel some sort of anxiety and fail to deal with it in a healthy way€¦ it might release as an even uglier beast in the long run or even something called hysteria, which is an emotional sympton expressed as a physical condition. I would postulate this is a starting point for hypochondriacs. I think that these inner demons can build up unconsciously and traumatize an individual without he or she being aware of the original cause. On the other hand, this energy might build up and expressed in another way, perhaps through cultural productivity, but I think that being productive to deal with suppressed anxiety does not relinquish it, but only holds it at bay.

Suggested Citation:
Sochat, Vanessa. "The Mind as Energy." @vsoch (blog), 29 Jan 2008, (accessed 12 Jun 24).