To be aware seems to me an ongoing mission.
Awareness is essential. Awareness can bring healing and can bring change. Awareness affects on a micro level and the macro level.
In my personal experience, I know that being aware about myself has been an invaluable tool. Becoming aware about how my own actions, my attitudes, my fears, my resentments were affecting my life was a necessity in the process of growing and maturing as a person. (And, I always seem to have far left to go!)
For me, this has always been work. And I’ve found that when I’ve not given myself time to reflect and think, I’ve seen in hindsight that I was in fact less aware of how things impacted me in my personal life then I had thought at the time.
One could say that is on a micro level. On a macro level, I see awareness being important when looking at many aspects of our social systems. Government, business… aspects of human relationships.
Without getting into a bunch of thoughts, an example of awareness or “unawareness” would be that of greed and how it affects people. I know in my life, I want to be an example for my daughter and rather show generosity and empathy. We all try, in general I believe, to teach our kids principles like sharing, respect…etc. We, in general, try to teach kids that greed and selfishness are not good things.
But, to make sure I’m not being an example where she, my daughter, sees greed then I must make sure I’m not practising greed in my daily life. This means there is a constant “self searching”. There has to be, because without it, I lose sight.
Greed and selfishness can look as simple as not wanting to share your candy when you’re a kid. Or maybe not letting someone else play with your toys.
On a macro level, we can see it in large systems. Take huge corporations like AIG who gambled millions and millions of dollars in mathematical equations and theories that were “wishful thinking” at best. They “bet the farm and lost” then came calling for their bailouts, they promptly paid out many nice bonuses to people working the system…. who lost everyone’s investments…. but managed to grab even more in the bailouts.
It takes many many people working their jobs, working the system that created that mess… there are many cogs in the huge wheel. The common response is that people just do their jobs. Thick compartmentalization makes it so that no one takes responsibility, avoidance is simple. Makes it easier. Easier to be unaware of the effect that wiping out the savings and well-being has had on millions of people. Easier to ignore. Easier to take $$ without consequence.
Greed, selfishness, these things can creep in ever so slowly. Where something looks good, can look harmless and beneficial.
But greed, selfishness, these things blind us. Making us live as if we are unaware. Because after a short time, we just can’t see past what our focus is whether it’s keeping all our candy or coming up with new age complex derivatives that are bound to make us millions more. The cost may be a friendship or it may be the retirement funds of 100k people.
Awareness, for me, is one of the keys to growth and living a good life.