Growing our consciousness is the most direct path out of suffering and self-defeat. Yet a lot of people believe that human nature, like the Ten Commandments, is set in stone. They say one’s human nature is a granite-like formation that resists appeals to virtue and reason, thereby preventing us from evolving beyond our often self-centered, ignorant, or foolish ways.
Our level of consciousness is likely to remain stationary only when we fail to explore our deeper dimensions. When we understand our psychological self, we become wiser, smarter, and happier. Without this self-knowledge, we fall under the influence of inner dynamics that produce suffering and self-defeat.
We’re smart, yet we’re not necessarily sufficiently conscious. We’re able to build complex technological systems—yet the toxic byproducts might be ruining our planet. Our advanced weaponry can also destroy life on earth if our primitive emotions and aggressive instincts prevail. Our consciousness is not keeping up with our cleverness. So what does it mean to be more evolved?
A higher consciousness is ultimately associated with the quality of our self-knowledge. We learn what is precise and true about our unconscious mind, even though we might initially be appalled at what we’re discovering. [Read more...]