A PRELIMINARY HYPOTHESIS
(Version without reference to the Internet)
Ralph B. Allison, M.D.
Retired Senior Psychiatrist, California Men's Colony State Prison
Published in HYPNOS,
Journal of the Swedish Society for Clinical & Experimental
Copyright c 1996
(Citation: Allison, RB. Essence Memory: A Preliminary
Hypothesis. Hypnos (1966) 23(1):6-13) ABSTRACT
A memory process exists in each human being which operates
parallel to that of the five senses and the central nervous
system. This process is most clearly demonstrated by
dissociators when the Essence operates as the Inner Self Helper
(ISH) during psychotherapy. All humans have an Essence, which
stores memories of all events in the Akashic Records in
Thoughtspace. When the Essence of an individual deems it
appropriate for that individual to remember any event, it may,
with approval of its Supervisors, retrieve that memory and bring
it to the consciousness of the individual. Unpleasant memories
are stored in bits and pieces and coded for the level of
emotional distress recall would cause that person. An
intelligent, concerned evaluation is conducted by the
supervisory Celestial Intelligent Energy (CIE) before any
traumatic memory is released for recall. Their goal is to
maintain the life and stability of the individual.
RALPH B. ALLISON, M.D., is a semi-retired psychiatrist, who now
limits his practice to forensic cases. He directed the Santa
Cruz County, California, Mental Health Service and had a private
practice there for 12 years before moving to Davis, California.
There he was staff psychiatrist in the Yolo County, California,
Mental Health Service for 3 years. He then moved to Los Osos,
California, when he was employed as a psychiatrist for the
California Men's Colony State Prison in San Luis Obispo for the
next 13 years. He organized the first workshop on MPD for the
American Psychiatric Association in 1978. In 1980, he
co-authored "Minds In Many Pieces" about his work with patients
with MPD in Santa Cruz. He is the author of numerous papers on
dissociative disorders in clinical practice, courts and prison.
A great debate rages about how memory is stored and recalled
(Ofshe & Watters, 1994; Loftus & Ketcham, 1994; Pendergrast,
1995; Herman, 1995). The only fact that seems agreed upon is
that some people remember some of what has happened to them in
the past. The interest of psychotherapists is in memories of
traumatic events that may or may not have happened to their
patients. These memories make up the raw material that
therapists must deal with when they take on the responsibility
of treating patients.
Traumatic memories consist of two components, the Geographical
Data and the Emotional Overlay. The Geographical Data consists
of information about the who, what, where, when, and why of the
situation. The Emotional Overlay consists of attitudes and
feelings that the patient developed as a result of the event. At
that particular time of their lives, the nature of the Emotional
Overlay was created by prior experiences and the future
implications of that traumatic event.
The controversy revolves around the questions of where and how
human memory is stored and retrieved. The human brain is assumed
to be the place where all memories are stored. Therefore, an
understanding of neurophysiology is considered essential to
comprehend the "rules" of memory storage and retrieval.
The research psychologists have entered the fray with their
debates about the rules regarding repression, suppression, and
human forgetting. In psychiatric residency, it was taught that
repression was involuntary, suppression was voluntary, and
forgetting was human. The Emotional Overlay made the difference
as to which process was used. A neutral Emotional Overlay
allowed forgetting to occur, and retrieval was easy, with
minimal cueing. Suppression of a given memory was triggered by
the opinion, "I don't like thinking about that." Repression
would be triggered by the opinion, "If I think about that, I
would be so ashamed of myself that I should kill myself."
My first patient with MPD (Allison, 1974), who started
treatment in 1972, presented with a wise and informative entity
whom I called the Inner Self Helper or ISH. That ISH told of
traumatic incidents which the patient could not remember. The
ISH calmly reported these memories in therapy, but the patient
could not remember them when she came back into conscious
control of her body. The ISH explained the Geographical Data of
the event, and she knew the nature of the Emotional Overlay for
the patient. However, the ISH exhibited no signs of the
Emotional Overlay herself.
In Minds In Many Pieces (1980), one ISH is described who also
told of information about her relatives who were at the scene at
that time. That patient could not have physically perceived this
data. Where did that additional "collateral data" come from, and
could it be true? It helped to explain the entire situation
regarding the attitudes and roles of her relatives at the time.
But it would have been physically impossible for the patient, as
a child, to have gained that knowledge through the use of any of
her sense organs.
Since meeting the ISH of this first patient with MPD, many
conversations have been held with the ISHs of subsequent
patients, including integrated ones. They have explained what
the ISH does to aid her charge, the dissociated patient.
The therapist will get a call, in a different voice, saying
that the patient just took an overdose. The ISH is calling for
immediate help. The ISH will tell the therapist what has
happened and how much risk is involved. The ISH will tell the
therapist what she, the ISH, can do to bring the crisis to a
closure. The therapist can choose to give the ISH specific
instructions to induce vomiting, call for an ambulance, call a
nearby friend, or take another action to save the patient's life.
The ISH is a reporter who can tell the therapist what the
patient has to accomplish in that therapy session. The ISH gives
the therapist feedback since she knows what has been done
successfully and unsuccessfully in past sessions. If the patient
has not been willing to listen to the therapist's wise advice,
the ISH will let the therapist know, if the therapist chooses to
The ISH manages the patient's memory and decides which memories
will be remembered or forgotten. The only rule that the ISH must
follow is to do whatever is needed to protect her human "charge"
from harm until her charge is strong enough to accept and
experience her memories fully.
The ISH may choose to block recall of a memory from the patient
or give flashbacks of what happened, including sight, smell,
touch, and taste perceptions. The ISH can withhold all the
Emotional Overlay of the memory or supply just enough emotional
energy to remind the patient what happened to her, but in a
small enough dose so as not to disable the patient.
The ISH can retrieve the memories of relatives and friends who
were on the scene and participated in the traumatic event. If
necessary for therapy, the ISH can secure access to the memories
of the "significant others." The therapist can utilize these
memories in helping the patient work through the traumatic
event. These are actual memories of the "significant others."
After Psychological Integration
The ISH was a role assignment to help the therapist bring about
psychological integration of the dissociated patient. Once
integration is completed, the role of the ISH is no longer
needed. Now the entity who previously played that role becomes
once again what each human has in her from birth, her "Essence."
The role of the ISH was assumed by the patient's Essence only
Other Functions of the Essence
The most easily appreciated function of the Essence in humans
is intuition. Other functions include d‚j… vu and creative
THE HUMAN MEMORY MANAGEMENT SYSTEM AS DESCRIBED BY THE ESSENCES
Human Memory Storage
The part of the mind that decides what experiences to store is
the Essence of each individual. For neurologically perceived
information, first, a sense organ, such as the eye, perceives
written data. Then the mind, using the brain, attributes meaning
to the experience. In the brain, the amygdala and hippocampus
process the memory, and then it is stored in the cortex. If the
Essence chooses to take that particular memory to the Akashic
Records (Guiley, 1991, pg. 4) for indefinite storage, it does so
next. The Essence attaches the proper address so that the memory
will be stored properly in that person's "Life File." The
memory, in a form similar to a hologram, is taken in small
packets by the Essence to the Akashic Records. The memories are
sequentially labeled and security coded by the "supervisors" of
the Essence, who prefer to be called the "Celestial Intelligent
Energy," or CIE, in what we have chosen to call Thoughtspace.
The Akashic Records Center, in Thoughtspace, is the "library"
for human memory. The memory is then recorded in its entirety in
that person's Life File, where it is stored until retrieval is
requested by the Essence of that person.
When the Essence of an individual decides that all is well for
that person to have conscious awareness of a memory, the Essence
selects the proper memory to retrieve. The Essence goes directly
to the Akashic Records in Thoughtspace, where the security code
is checked, to make sure the memory is cleared for retrieval. If
it is, the proper file is located in the person's Life File and
approved for recall. Those packets of memory are then recorded
in the "holographic recorder" of the Essence of the person who
originally experienced the memory. The Essence then transfers
those memories into the cortex of that person's brain. Then the
person's mind can interpret the bits and pieces of memory as
they are retrieved by the Essence, in the doses and formats that
are safe for the emotional stability of the individual. The
memories are then expressed by the person verbally and in body
An important feature of the system is that information is not
sent all in one block, like a package in the mail. The
information is split up into small packets, none of which is big
enough to upset the person when she remembers it. The Essence
delivers the messages in the amounts that the person can handle.
Only a small bit needs to be recalled to remind the person what
the incident was like. Any more might be cruel and unusual
punishment, and that is not what any Essence will do to its
To properly control the flow of data, there have to be
intelligent monitors to decide who gets what information, other
than that which they themselves had stored in the Life File they
are now trying to access. These monitors oversee the searching
procedures so that a given Essence does not get lost and end up
reading someone else's file by mistake. They also provide for
the appropriate security screening procedures to protect harmful
information from being prematurely recalled.
These screening and monitoring functions are provided by the
Celestial Intelligent Energy (CIE), who are the Supervisors of
the Essences. In the past I called these the Higher Helpers
(Allison, 1985), but now I call them the CIE. They operate in
three hierarchical levels. The immediate Supervisor of any
individual's Essence is called the Spiritual Guardian of the
Essence. The supervisor of the Guardian is called the Spiritual
Teacher of the Guardians. Overseeing all of them is the
Spiritual Professor of the Teachers. The CIE grant clearance to
each person's Essence regarding what memories can be retrieved
from the Akashic Records and placed in the consciousness of the
individual in question.
An assignment of security codes exists for traumatic memories
stored in the Akashic Records. No matter what memory enhancement
techniques a therapist might use, there will be certain
historical scenes recorded that are deemed by the CIE as too
disturbing for that person to remember. These files are "tagged"
as in one of three levels of security, and only the Spiritual
Professor can grant access to any Essence for those memories to
The minimal level of security of traumatic memories is attached
to those memories which are unpleasant to recall, but in which
the Emotional Overlay does not include conflictual feelings,
such as guilt or shame. These can be recalled when there is a
good reason, such as to report a crime or testify in court.
Recalling such memories may be unpleasant but not emotionally
harmful to the person.
The medium level of security of traumatic memories is attached
to those memories which would be unpleasant to recall, and in
which the Emotional Overlay includes conflictual feelings, such
as guilt or shame. These memories cannot be recalled until
psychotherapy has progressed to the point where the Essence
believes the information can safely be remembered, and the
negative Emotional Overlay can be neutralized by discussion with
an ethical therapist.
The maximum level of security of traumatic memories is attached
to those memories which are unpleasant to recall, and in which
the Emotional Overlay is so horrible that remembering any of it
will make the person catatonic and disabled for life. No "memory
jogging" procedure will ever allow that information to be
returned to the person's consciousness. The patient will have
total amnesia for that block of time, the Essence will not ask
for that memory to be recalled, and the CIE will not authorize
such memory to be released from the Akashic Records.
The world we physically inhabit can be called Physicalspace. It
is composed of objects and the forces causing them to relate to
each other, such as gravity. It is limited in time and space,
and the fastest speed possible is that of light. The primary
providers of person-to-person communication are the postal
service and the telephone companies. The experts in
understanding the rules and procedures of Physicalspace are
physicists, chemists, biologists, and similar "hard science"
Continuing in the same vein, all of us recognize that we think,
when awake, and it is suggested that the "universe" in which
thought is managed be called "Thoughtspace." In the past, this
same "space" has been called the "Spirit World" by shamans, and,
more recently, the "Astral Plane" by the Theosophists. Both of
these terms are now archaic and related to world-view belief
systems of earlier eras. To use these terms now would cause
unnecessary misunderstanding. That is why the word
"Thoughtspace" is offered as a label for that "universe" in
which thought is the primary method of person-to-person
communication. This is a co-existent universe we humans inhabit
when thinking while awake or, when dreaming, when asleep.
The rules and procedures of Thoughtspace are not agreed upon by
modern scholars, but have been conjectured by innumerable
esoteric scholars over the centuries. Two basic features of
Thoughtspace are the absences of time and distance. Everything
in Thoughtspace is eternal and infinite. There are no discrete
objects in Thoughtspace, and "everything" is connected and
communicating with "everything" else. All is intelligent energy,
but not of a type which can be measured by any of the tools of
Physicalspace. At this time, there are no agreed upon experts in
the study of Thoughtspace, but philosophers, theologians,
parapsychologists, psychical researchers, psychiatrists, and
psychologists are the ones usually dealing with questions about
The Akashic Records Center is the storage "library" for all
memories of all humans who were ever placed or born onto the
universe. It can be described as a gigantic library in
Thoughtspace where Essences house, update, index, and retrieve
memories for their purposes only. The memories can only be
retrieved by the Essences who stored them there. One part houses
memories that are pleasing or satisfying. Another part contains
traumatic memories. Another houses the memories of parents and
family members relating to interactions with that person. Since
the Akashic Records center is in Thoughtspace, humans cannot see
If the memory to be retrieved is of a happy, contented, and
satisfying event, it is absorbed by the Essence. Absorbed
memories are then brought back immediately to the charge for
his/her experience and enjoyment.
If the Essence wishes to retrieve traumatic memories, the
Essence's Guardian must agree that this is the correct time in
therapy for the memory requested to be provided. If the
traumatic event might overwhelm the charge, the Guardian and the
other CIE have a conference with the Essence to determine the
correct timing. When they come to a mutual conclusion, they will
pick one of three choices. They may choose to give no memory at
all. They may decide to give a partial memory and experience in
all senses. Or they will give the Essence the full memory with
all senses in full operation.
Usually the CIE will go along with what the Essence is
requesting, as the Essence knows the charge better than they do.
At that point in the therapy session, they will provide enough
memory for the Essence to supply the bare framework of the
event, with only enough emotions to allow the patient to
experience the Emotional Overlay.
Once the CIE has reached a decision, the Essence goes to the
specially coded memory in her charge's file. Again, the Essence
absorbs the memory and takes it to the charge just in time for
the patient to have the memory available for therapy.
If the memory involves family members or friends, the CIE will
only authorize the clearance after a discussion with each of
the Essences of the individuals involved. Once a conclusion has
been accepted by all, the Essences of the patient and of the
friends and/or relatives go together to the specially coded
files in the Family Section. All of the Professors of all
Essences of all persons involved in the incident must approve
the recall of this memory by any one of them. The memories will
only be implanted into the Essence of the patient who is in
NEUROBIOLOGICAL MEMORY MATERIAL
The human brain extremely important in memory management, since
the brain contains the memories needed for bodily survival and
daily activities. But the above hypothesis suggests that only a
modest portion of human memory is totally managed in the brain.
What types of memories are managed entirely by our
Since there is no time concept in Thoughtspace, anything
relating to time must be managed in the brain. Time is a man
made concept, and the human ways of measuring time have varied
over the span of human existence. Any genealogist knows this
after trying to figure out when a relative was born, if the
event occurred before 1752, when the Julian calendar was
replaced by the Gregorian calendar. In memories stored in the
Akashic Records, only sequential information is noted, so that
one can recall which event happened first, second, or third.
Anything to do with WHEN any event happened must be stored in
the brain, as time data cannot be attached to the files in the
Other memories that cannot be stored in the Akashic Records are
those having to do with physical bodily functions. All
neurological reflexes are managed by the Central Nervous System.
Any learned physical behavior, such as how to drive a car or
ride a bicycle, must be stored in the brain, for similar
reasons. This includes any trained responses learned on the job,
such as how to assemble items in a factory. The body is only
temporary, as far as the Essence is concerned, so anything to do
with the particular physical structure used in this lifetime has
no place in Akashic Records.
Learned emergency physical reactions needed for personal
survival must be stored in the brain. The same applies to
physical maneuvers that soldiers learn while training for
The other use of the brain is for all conscious memories.
EXPERIENCES NOT PERCEIVED BY SENSE ORGANS
Most memories which have come into the CNS through the five
senses will be stored by the Essence in the Akashic Records.
There are other types of memories people have from time to time
that were never perceived by the five senses, so they could not
have entered the CNS neurological memory system. The most common
type is one's own private thoughts.
Which of the five senses do we use to perceive our own
thoughts, which we have not spoken or written? If we appreciate
our mental environment through only our five physical senses, we
would have no way to remember what we thought. Yet we all can
remember our thoughts when we had our first kiss or were fired
from our first job.
The Jungians have made a great study of dreams, and much of
Freud's work was based on analyzing his own dreams. How did
Freud remember his dreams, without a sense organ to perceive and
record them? But all persons remember at least some of their
dreams. Yet there is no organic system to transfer that data
into neurological memory.
Some people have Out of Body Experiences (OBE) (Guiley, 1991,
pg. 419-423) during which they see themselves from a vantage
point outside their physical body. What sense organ are they
using to see their body from the ceiling above, when all sense
organs are being deprived of oxygen?
The same reasoning goes for Near Death Experiences (NDE)
(Guiley, 1991, pg. 399-400), which are often reported by
rational individuals. What sense organ can they be using to see
the tunnel of light? How do they remember thinking about whether
to live or die?
Some people have responded to verbal stimuli while under
anesthesia. Surgeons have been warned by hypnotists who have
interviewed post-surgical patients who reported overhearing
conversations between the doctors and the surgical nurses
(Cheek, 1966). These persons were under deep chemical anesthesia
but could not feel pain or move. Therefore, they would not be
able to hear, either. What sense organ were they using to hear
the surgeon tell the nurse that they had inoperable cancer and
would die no matter what they did?
These types of memories are the ones that can only be perceived
by the Essence of the individual, which has no sense organs and
operates even if the person is almost physically dead. The
Essence perceives everything that is happening in and around the
person, records it continuously, and stores it in the Akashic
Records. When it is necessary for the person to know any of this
information, the Essence has to have the proper clearance to
retrieve whatever is necessary and safe for her charge to
remember. That is the way Essence Memory works.
ESSENCE MEMORY CONTENT
All personal experiences are preserved in the original form
with all sensory and emotional components available. However, it
is highly unlikely that any memory will ever be retrieved and
recalled in its complete format.
In addition, telepathic message from others at the time of the
trauma will also be preserved, just as the police preserve tape
recordings of their wire taps. The Essence, which is responsible
for keeping the charge alive, can tap into the minds and
memories of important people in the charge's life, if that
information is needed for the charge's survival. All those
"recorded tapes" are stored right along with whatever the sense
organs perceived. The "tapes" can be replayed for his/her
benefit in therapy sessions if an ethical therapist knows how to
"operate the tape player."
FACTORS THE ESSENCE TAKES INTO ACCOUNT WHEN RETRIEVING
When a traumatic memory is not available to a patient's
consciousness, that patient's Essence has made the decision
that the charge was not mentally stable enough to remember that
incident at that time. If the charge then has an ethical
therapist who is supportive of her patient remembering this
incident, the Essence will then be willing to retrieve the
traumatic episode from the Akashic Records.
One important factor is the listener. Is the listener friendly
or threatening? Is he a policeman who might arrest her if she
confessed or a priest who might give her absolution for her
sins? Is the listener open minded and willing to accept whatever
the patient has to say without criticism, or has she made up her
mind and will only listen to what she already thinks happened?
Is the setting private or public? Is anyone there whom the
person might embarrass or humiliate if a memory is revealed? Can
the person trust those in attendance to give her a fair hearing,
or are they already biased against her?
It is the purpose of this meeting? Do the others in attendance
need to know, or are they just curious? Will they print what is
said in the tabloids, or will they keep it to themselves? Will
the benefits of disclosure outweigh the risks of embarrassment?
How mature and emotionally stable is the person who is to
remember this material? The Essence must be sure that
remembering will not hurt the charge. The curiosity of others is
not sufficient to overrule that Prime Directive. Even the threat
of legal sanctions will be insufficient to cause the Essence to
retrieve the memory. The Essence predicts the charge's emotional
reaction to remembering this material in this context.
When the Essence decides that the memory will be more
beneficial than harmful, the Essence can then supply the bits of
Geographical Data in the proper order and volume. The Essence
must feel confident that the charge will not dissociate again
when remembering this material in this setting.
When the Essence decides to retrieve memory of a traumatic
episode, the Geographical Data will be sent first. If that is
accepted by the person, the Essence will deliver some of the
Emotional Overlay in the form of small puffs of feelings. These
bits of emotion will be just enough
to remind the person what she felt like at the time of the
event, but not enough to unbalance her in the present situation.
The Essence cannot harm anyone. The Essence will evaluate what
the people in attendance are likely to do with this information
when they leave the room. If the Essence senses that the
therapist is interested in using the patient as a political pawn
in a battle with authority figures, the Essence will withhold
any information that would help with the therapist's planned
revenge. If the therapist insists the patient come up with
something, the patient may feel forced to present what the
therapist wants from her own imagination. The Essence thus
indirectly sanctions the creation of a "false memory" as the
best way to handle the problem of the therapist. Then the
Essence of the therapist is the one with work to do. No Essence
will deliver material to be used against someone else.
Extensive study of dissociated patients who have integrated
with appropriate psychotherapy has led to evidence of a parallel
memory management system called Essence Memory. This system
deals with memory that is initially processed by the
neurological memory system, but which is not stored permanently
in the brain. It also deals with memory which was never
perceived by any of the five sense organs. Such memories are
processed by the person's Essence and stored in the Akashic
Records in Thoughtspace, not in the CNS neurons of
Physicalspace. From there, the Essence can retrieve memories
under certain conditions. Each Essence manages its charge's
memory intelligently. Memories are delivered to the person in
the manner and amount that is deemed safe for mental stability
at the time of recall. The Essence is a concerned, intelligent
energy that is being monitored by Supervisors called the
Celestial Intelligent Energy. All of them, working together,
decide which traumatic memories can be recalled when, by the
person who experienced the trauma. They will allow this to
happen only if they are sure that the person will not be harmed
by recalling that memory. They are interested solely in the
welfare of the person so involved, who is allowed recall of
traumatic memories in a setting and at a time that will be of
benefit to that person.REFERENCES
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