The Path of Awareness – Part 1

Encounter Groups were an early means of consciousness raising

Until recently, I haven’t shared much on my own path of awareness because I believed that it was shared by most people. Sharing about it seemed unnecessary. But events of the recent past have suggested to me that that appraisal may not be the case. In fact, it may have been shared by most people many years ago, but perhaps not now.

It may be that the intervening years, which I thought saw the path survive and grow, may not have seen it prosper. Certainly the cabal did everything it could after the decades of the Sixties and Seventies to defeat lightwork. So maybe our knowledge of the path of awareness did not blossom in quite the way I thought.

I’m going to take the chance that it may not have and begin to communicate about it.

The path of awareness is something that draws on the spiritual insights of people like Ramana Maharshi and the Zen masters, but extends them into everyday life in a way that they had not previously been extended. Another name for the path of awareness is consciousness raising or the growth movement.

The earliest and the single biggest motivator for consciousness raising was the civil rights movement and its leading proponent was Dr. Martin Luther King. The motivation was thereafter taken up by the feminist movement, which took consciousness raising to a whole new level.

Unfortunately the violence that attended the anti-Vietnam War movement, in my eyes, lost us some of the widespread social support we had. We were consciousness raising, no doubt, but sometimes did it by razing banks, etc.

The end of the Seventies saw a time of recession arise and the beginning of the many corporatist “bubble” economies that began with junk bonds and may have ended most recently with the mortgage and derivatives bubbles, the bail-out and the fall of cabalistic capitalism.

The end of capitalism as a viable economic system (well, it was probably never viable and never intended to be) saw economic survival became the order of the day. People seemed to put aside an emphasis on human growth and concentrate on making a living. I recall reading articles on what happened to the hippies in later life and many of them donned suits and ties, probably out of necessity. After this time I lost sight of what happened to the growth movement.

Its most basic tenet was to expand and increase the purview of our awareness. Perhaps the key statement of the path of awareness or of consciousness raising was “I’m aware of.” It’s a basic aspect of being human to notice that one can bestow consciousness on things. We can be aware of all aspects of life, and we can be aware that we’re aware of it. We can make of ourselves an object of awareness. Of others. Of things remote in time and space. We can even make of God an object of awareness.

Awareness is a divine attribute, is it not? God is aware of everything. If the purpose of life is to know ourselves as God, so that God can meet God in a moment of enlightenment, then the continual expansion of our awareness can be seen as a path to God, is that not true? And in fact it turns out, as far as I and many other practitioners of the path of awareness are concerned, to be true.

And, when we do bestow awareness on something, if we observe closely, touching each thing with our awareness results in something. And that is perhaps a corollary of the tenet of awareness.

Bestowing awareness on something without attempting to change it causes that something to move or release. Resisting it causes that something to persist. Werner Erhard used to say what we resist persists. If we want something to shift or release, be aware of it and let it be.

So, for instance, if I was upset, if I simply bestowed my awareness on my upset and observed it, rather than acting it out, projecting it onto another, gunnysacking it, or doing the myriad things which our society does, all of which cause “drama” or ritualized activity perpetuating upset, then the upset would lift about as fast as it was ever going to.

So perhaps I can end this first instalment on the path of awareness by establishing this basic insight, that becoming more and more aware of every aspect of our lives turned out to be a good thing and produced good effects, and that simply being aware of our upsets and unwanted conditions, without trying to change them or fix them, caused them to work themselves out and be released.



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