Cleaning Out an Anesthesia Recording

To clean out an anesthesia recording,1 you get an interested counselor (or two hundred of them, if possible) and tell everything you can remember about first considering that you might have to have surgery, and everything that happened after that.

When you get to present time, start over at the same place, or earlier if an earlier memory comes up, and tell it all through again to present time. And plan on telling it two hundred million times, so that the two thousand times it will probably take won’t seem so bad.

Each time you come to the onset of the anesthesia, tell everything you remember until the memories blank out. Then skip to the earliest memory after the surgery and continue to present time. As you go over it, you will remember farther into the anesthesia period and earlier into the ending of the anesthesia.When you are bored to death and cannot make yourself tell the long story enthusiastically, and cannot seem to shrink the period of unconsciousness any more, begin to tell a fantasy of what went on during the knocked-out2 period. Be as creative and wild as you can be, but do tell everything that occurs to you.

Some people actually recover every detail of what went on in the surgery, but it’s more common to get a very mixed-up fantasy because you will have restimulated an enormous number of past experiences that will have become part of the tale. Each time you go over it, try to be more fantastic. On your nineteenth or so repetition, you’ll find that certain elements reappear each time you go over it, although they may change their form. The yawns will have begun long before this but will become fast and deep.

When you can’t remember anything about it in the framework of “review of a pattern,“ you can quit. This doesn’t mean you have lost your memory. If the material is asked for in another context, and there’s some point in your remembering it, you’ll be able to present it to a thoughtful, trustable inquisitor.

Harvey Jackins3

From a letter written in 1995

(Present Time 171, April 2013)


Last modified: 2017-05-10 04:36:22-07