Awakening consciousness

Common sense

A priori, you consider yourself as a person acting in consciousness. You consider yourself as an absolutely free and totally responsible person.

Are you really?

Common sense guided Gandhi in his youth. Listen to him talking about how conventions mattered to him when he was a student in London:

‘‘The clothes after the Bombay cut that I was wearing were, I thought unsuitable for English society, and I got new ones at the Army and Navy stores. I also went in for a chimney-pot hat costing nineteen shillings an excessive price in those days. Not content with this, I wasted ten pounds on an evening suit made in Bond Street, the centre of fashionable life in London; and got my good and noble hearted brother to send me a double watch-chain of gold. It was not correct to wear a ready-made tie and I learnt the art of tying one for myself.’’

According to society’s common sense and on another level, when we hire someone, it is perfectly normal to try to pay him the least possible. And it is perfectly normal that women’s rights are opposed as well as that of minorities.

If someone lives according to common sense, he is said to be a reliable person, a responsible, trustworthy fellow. He may even be considered as a model in his surroundings.

But, as one ponders about it… these precepts in the end, are they not simply limited to the sole experience of the group to which we belong? As Pascal said: ‘There are truths on this side of the Pyrenees, which are falsehood on the other.’’

Towards a rise in consciousness: the shock

Sometimes circumstances in life disturb the laws of common sense. All types of cases exist: we marry someone from a different culture, we think that she is going to be grateful to live according to our principles and it is the opposite; or else, our children oppose our values, or despite our certificates, we are not hired according to our level of studies.

Let go and question yourself through these shocks. Follow their lead to auto criticism: they can bring you to a widening of your consciousness. Don’t shut yourself: you are at the point of reaching a new perspective of reality, a larger approach to reality. Like Martin Luther King, it shall maybe lead you to your highest self-fulfilment.

Martin Luther King narrates the shock he got in his childhood and which deeply marked him since he still remembers it all as an adult. One can even imagine how this shock has contributed to his future commitment and in this way, was awakening:

‘‘From the age of three, I had a white playmate who was about my age. We always felt free to play our childhood games together. He did not live in our community, but he was usually around every day; his father owned a store across the street from our home. At the age of six, we both entered school, separated schools of course. I remember how our friendship began to break as soon as we entered school; this was not my desire but his. The climax came when he told me one day, that his father had demanded that he would play with me no more. I never will forget what a great shock this was to me.’’

Towards a rise in consciousness: the experience of consciousness

From the moment you receive the shock, you attain a broadened consciousness.

Gandhi got a rough shock at the Maritzburg train station in South Africa. He was a lawyer and travelled first class as per the ticket he bought. He was nevertheless asked to go into third class. Being an Indian, he had no right to first class. Since he refused, he was thrown out of the train.

This event which questions Gandhi’s common sense is very interesting for ourselves in many ways. It shows the terms/conditions leading to a choice:

The first option consisted in ensuring that his rights are respected as per common sense. Consequently, he could sue the one who threw him out of the train because this act questioned the identity he had been attributed with at the London Bar.

The second option, that of Gandhi, will be the decision to question one’s own convictions, fruits of common sense as well as that of his parents, the fruits of the education he received. This questioning will make Gandhi become conscious of the whole section of colored people living in South Africa.

The fact that he accepted this shock and did not entrench himself into anger and rebellion enabled Gandhi to become the Mahatma. By accepting the difficult situations of your life, you too shall understand better the world around you because you shall integrate these multiple components. You can then diagnose dysfunctions in relationships and from there on, suggest solutions.

You are no longer biased since you can love with a universal love. You experience, and ??? a rise in consciousness. Those around you shall try their best to imitate you. This is how global consciousness will rise from your own awakening, for the very best of humanity.