Anil Peter

Awareness is the ability, to stand back and watch one’s mental and
physical activity. So what’s unique about this phenomena? Well, the
fact of the matter is very few of us are aware. Most of the time, we
have so completely identified ourselves, with our body, mind, work,
habits etc. that we get lost in them. And yet, this quality called
awareness is unique to the human species.
Plants have feelings, but no mobility, Animals have both feeling and
mobility. Man also has this but at the same time he has this extra
attribute awareness. Man has this extra and all important ability to be
able to know his consciousness, and to allow it to manifest and blossom
to its fullest potential. This consciousness, the underlying life
principle in every atom, is the same in all things, but its expression
can be different. In plants and bacteria, this consciousness is
expressed at a very rudimentary level, while in man it is expressed at a
far more complex level.
So where does all this get us as far as our daily life is concerned?
If one looks at the nature of the mind, one can immediately see that its
essential nature is movement. By being aware, one watches this movement
of the mind. A very beautiful story would illustrate this point.
There once lived a king, with a beautiful, but rampantly wild horse.
The king promised, that he would handsomely reward anyone, who could
subdue his horse. A contest was therefore arranged, where many tried
mounting this horse, only to be thrown off it. Finally, one rather weak
looking individual volunteered. He escorted the wild horse out, and
returned a while later, seated astride on the horse, with the horse
obeying his every instruction. The king was amazed, and wanted to know
how this man had succeeded, when so many others had failed. To this the
horse tamer replied, “Instead of fighting your stallion, I let him run
freely to his hearts content, following his own impulses. Eventually he
became fatigued and submissive. It was then no problem, to befriend
your horse and gain command”.
It is the same with the mind, if we fight and wrestle with the mind, we
will never achieve mastery over it. The method to adopt is similar to
the wild horse tamer, let the mind follow its impulses and tendencies
without restriction, until it becomes ready to accept your authority,
give the mind free run. Don’t suppress it, but merely watch and get to
know it.
Through increased awareness, we start responding to situations instead
of reacting to them. That is, by watching the life process, the
activities around oneself as well as one’s mental activities, this
divine intelligence in us, the consciousness, is better able to express
itself. As a result of which we become better communicators, salesmen,
research scientists, family men etc. As one starts responding to the
environment, one starts living in greater harmony with it.
Awareness is a quality that can quite easily be developed. It is in
fact a quality, we always have possessed, but have forgotten it, because
of wrong thinking. Awareness is in fact a process of letting go. We
let go of our dogmas, ideas, concepts, and try seeing things as they

Published in the October 2010 edition of Yoga & Total Health Magazine.

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