With relaxation and trance, we move the tip of the iceberg aside so that we can access and communicate directly with aspects of the deep mind that are not ordinarily in consciousness. During the experience, the conscious mind remains awake and observant, but resting.
The conscious mind, like the part of the iceberg above the surface, is a small portion of the whole being. The conscious mind is what we ordinarily think of when we say "my mind". It's associated with thinking, analyzing and making judgments and decisions. Then too, it is looking and listening and feeling. The conscious mind is actively sorting and filtering its perceptions because only so much information can reside in consciousness at once.
Only seven bits of information, plus or minus two can be held consciously at one time. Everything else we are thinking, feeling or perceiving now along with all our memories remain unconscious until they're called into consciousness or until they rise spontaneously. By invoking a relaxed state we can help the conscious mind get out of the way and allow us to access powerful unconscious resources to foster in ourselves relaxation, relief from pain and anxiety and control of physiological processes like blood pressure and heart rate.
The imagination is the medium of communication between the conscious and unconscious parts of the mind. As indicated in the illustration of the iceberg, the imagination is at the surface of the water.
Communication through the imagination is two-way. The conscious mind can also use the medium of the imagination to communicate with the unconscious mind. The conscious mind sends suggestions about what it wants through the imagination to the unconscious. It imagines things, and the subconscious intelligences work to make them happen. This process is utilized for many divergent endeavors. The suggestions can be words, feelings or images. Athletes commonly use images to mentally rehearse how they want to perform by picturing themselves successfully completing their competition. A tennis player may see a tennis ball striking the racket at just the right spot, at just the perfect moment in their swing. Studies show that this form of imaging improves performance. It teaches, making changes in the brain which are lasting and exhibited during actual competitions. Imaging appears to create new neuro-pathways which actually help to support or even create the intended outcome. Other studies show that during the imaging practice, physiological changes take place throughout the body. This is kind of neat. It means that just doing some delightful imagining can actually result in learning which can then be experienced physiologically.