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December 10, 2016 / 10 Kislev, 5777
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In Hebrew: ‘Subconscious’

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תַּת-מוּדָע

If מוּדָעוּת is awareness or consciousness, תַּת-מוּדָעis the subconscious or the unconscious. The particle -תַּת means sub- or under-, just as in English, in phrases like:

תַּת-יַמִּיunderwater
תַּת-מִיןsubspecies
תַּת-אָלוּףbrigadier general (subservient to the general)

An example of תת-מודע:

זִיגְמוֹנְד פְּרוֹיד פִּתֵּחַ אֶת הַמֻּשָּׂג שֶׁל הַתַּת-מוּדָע.
Sigmund Freud developed the concept of the unconscious.

Although, strictly speaking, the unconscious should be called תת-הַמודע, since תת-מודע is almost a single word on its own, it’s more appropriate to say הַתת-מודע.

Note that here unconscious refers to the psychological phenomenon, not the state of being unconscious of what’s going around around due to injury, etc. That is חֲסַר הַכָּרָה.

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Ami Steinberger

About the Author: Ami Steinberger is founder and director of Ulpan La-Inyan.

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