Liminal Consciousness is the state that exists between and betwixt, at the edges of boundaries, at dawn and dusk, in the moments before falling asleep and the moments of resurfacing from the dreamtime into waking. It is a time that is often more vulnerable, but also more alchemically charged. The liminal state is not as fully formed as what is on either side of it, it partakes of both sides, and therefore it is an ideal state for creating new forms.

“The liminal state is characterized by ambiguity, openness, and indeterminacy. One’s sense of identity dissolves to some extent, bringing about disorientation. Liminality is a period of transition where normal limits to thought, self-understanding, and behavior are relaxed — a situation which can lead to new perspectives.

The crossroads are a meeting of two directions, where a traveler must make a choice between continuing straight ahead and turning onto a new path directly away from the old one. Or like Rod Serling said (…) is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination(…)

The artist occupying a position at, or on both sides of the threshold of the liminal consciousness have been the main creative cultural force from roughly 1956 to 1996 , when the model stopped working and started to fold onto itself. One reason — among several — is that as soon as has the liminal spaces start getting really interesting, they get invaded and absorbed by the paradigmatic mind, The Hutts, Dopplegangers and other Empire figures, who ruins them. The cultural capital extracted from liminal spaces have a predictable lifecycle, in which success means death by drowing.

This insight was influenced by Venkatesh Rao’s Gervais Principle, an analysis of workplace dynamics.


When you find yourself in a circumstance where the principle of responsiveness has overcome the principles of conservation and dissonance you’ve now entered into a new location and this is what I’m calling liminal mind or liminal consciousness and so the first thing to keep in mind is that this space is in fact actually the base this is the source from which paradigms emerge and therefore it’s also the place to which paradigms dissolve when they break up completely.

You may have heard the word used in Tibetan Buddhism for the bardo state — the “transitional state” or “in-between state” or “liminal state”. Used loosely, the term “bardo” refers to the intermediate state of existence between lives on earth. The liminal space lies between the known and the unknown — the space is a transitional space of heightened intensity.


“I went down to the crossroad, fell down on my knees. Asked the lord above ‘have mercy, save poor Bob, if you please.’” — Robert Johnson, Cross Road Blues)1936).

The story tells of Robert Johnson, a young blues player, who wanted musical fame. Robert heard voices one night, telling him to take his guitar down to the crossroads at midnight. As he stood there waiting, a tall dark man walked up and told Robert he could have his fame in exchange for his soul. Robert agreed, the stranger took Robert’s guitar and tuned it. After receiving the guitar back, Robert played a few licks and was amazed at his improvement. When he looked back up, the dark stranger was gone. For now. At least that’s how the story goes. As to its truth?

Think Coltrane, Rabel, Debussy, Stravinsky: It’s as if Liminal existence can be located in a separated sacred space, which occupies a sacred time. Examples in the Bible include the dream of Jacob where he encounters God between heaven and earth and the instance when Isaiah meets the Lord in the temple of holiness. In such a liminal space, the individual experiences the revelation of sacred knowledge where God imparts his knowledge on the person in the subtle space between any sense of identity you’ll find there is something there that is neither and both and more. There is a dimensionalization of consciousness that allows us to exist in a kind of quantum reality where both ‘the particle and the wave’ co-exist. Wormholes are bridges through space-time that create a shortcut from one reality to another.

The dissolution of order during liminality creates a fluid, malleable situation that enables new forms to arise. We speak of emergence — but it’s usually inside the unexamined current perspective of thinking emergence is an action that happens between solid realities

More conventionally, springs, caves, shores, rivers, volcanic calderas — ‘ are used as another symbol of transcendence’ — , passes, crossroads, bridges, and marshes are all liminal: ‘“edges”, borders or faultlines between the legitimate and the illegitimate’. Oedipus (an adoptee and therefore liminal) met his father at the crossroads and killed him; Major transformations occur at crossroads and other liminal places, at least partly because liminality — being so unstable — can pave the way for access to esoteric knowledge or understanding of both sides. Liminality is sacred, alluring, and dangerous.

When you’re in a in a truly deeply mental space you don’t necessarily even have the capacity to name the things that you’re experiencing so making sense can become very limited and you might be in a part

perceiving something that under a paradigmatic frame you would call a tree but in a liminal space you don’t have a name for it you’re just experiencing it and it’s raw sensorial and of course this means you can be quite limited like your your ability to make meaningful choices.

Jungians have often seen the individuation process of self-realization as taking place within a liminal space. ‘Individuation begins with a withdrawal from normal modes of socialisation, epitomized by the breakdown of the persona…liminality’. .What takes place in the dark phase of liminality is a process of breaking down…in the interest of “making whole” one’s meaning, purpose and sense of relatedness once more.

Jungians however have perhaps been most explicit about the ‘need to accord space, time and place for liminal feeling’ — as well about the associated dangers, ‘two mistakes: we provide no ritual space at all in our lives…or we stay in it too long’.

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