When I heard about Al Gore’s advocacy on raising awareness along with his documentary on climate chance in 2006, it dawned on to me that we all need to raise our consciousness no matter where we stand in life.
I remembered my yoga instructor once saying that if we had a problem or felt a pain practicing a certain yoga pose, we shouldn’t avoid this pose. On the contrary, in order to solve the problem or alleviate the pain, we should practice exactly this pose, however, with another approach and a different awareness.
In neurobiology they say the brain is capable of lifelong learning. It can develop and adopt complex neuronal circuits. However our attitude plays a role in servicing and maintaining our human brains. The more highly networked the brain gets, the more refined our attitudes will become. Empathy, humility, truthfulness etc will develop. This is the difference to an animal brain. So why not making use of it? This will lead to a higher level of consciousness and help us climb up the ladder of humanity.
Mysticism is about knowing one’s Self, by withdrawing the attention from outside and bringing it inside, quieting the mind and concentrating at the seat of the soul. This is where we have self-awareness and understanding who we are. By rising up, leaving the body behind we rise above body consciousness and ultimately have cosmic consciousness.
What I try to bring forward is that different fields of thought will say the same, namely we can raise our understanding and become more conscious in different pursuits – may it be in physical yoga, by understanding better what we need to do to preserve the environment, by training our brains and developing our attitudes and values, and ultimately, of course through meditation.