Awareness Leads To Freedom Leads to Responsibility

I have finished Toru Sato’s small, but potent, The Ever-Transcending Spirit: The Psychology of Human Relationships, Consciousness, and Development. I have read several writers who took 700-800 pages to explain the research that Sato condensed into 100 readable and logical pages. [Note: I used to give book links to Amazon, but I discovered bookshop.org where you can buy books and donate to independent booksellers or find a local independent bookseller from whom to purchase. I’m changing my ways.]

While discussing the findings of a number of researchers, he summarizes:

The more we mature, the more we develop the ability to step out of ourselves and see ourselves more and more from an objective standpoint.

I remember clearly the incident, however I’m not sure if I was 11 or 12 at the time. I was fighting with another boy. The reason doesn’t matter. But I had a moment when I clearly saw us and the guys standing around watching us. And I thought, how stupid to be fighting. And while subjecting my temper is a lifelong project, I never had a fight again.

Therefore, more maturity means more awareness.

Then he shows that awareness leads to freedom.

If we have awareness and freedom, we realize the more freedom we have, the more we feel responsible for what we do.

But, researchers also show that we don’t like that responsibility, so we blame others for many things in our lives.

We can refuse to develop our awareness in order to escape from responsibility.

And thus describes much of the country, and indeed the world, today.

That is why practicing awareness is so important to begin with. Then accepting that maturity is good and freedom carries with it responsibility.

Stop, pause, breathe, exhale slowly. Become aware of ourselves, see ourself in action, see how we need to change.

(From an English translation of Burns’ To a Louse:

Oh, would some Power give us the gift
To see ourselves as others see us!
It would from many a blunder free us,
And foolish notion:
What airs in dress and gait would leave us,
And even devotion!

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