Share your methods for increasing your awareness

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Share your methods for increasing your awareness

 It makes sense to me that awareness is the only real freedom as it reveals choices and lack thereof, as well as consequences. Let's try to list some methods of improving awareness other than meditation, or if you wish to include your meditation practice, describe how you do it in detail. I will start:

 

One time, I looked at myself through my own eyes. Now I perceive myself constantly. In fact, I am more aware of myself than I am of my surroundings, not to say that I am unaware of them. Unless, of course, I am listening to some Jedi Mind Tricks walking down the street.


Beyond Saving
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 Why would you want to be

 Why would you want to be more absorbed with yourself? I think most people have the opposite problem of not being aware of their surroundings because they are too busy inside their own heads. I have witnessed people hunting and walking right past the game they are looking for because they are not paying attention. People at the poker table too busy thinking about their own hand that they miss blatant indications of weakness from their opponent. People in business spend so much time focussed on what they are doing that they ignore their customers.

 

I think it is far better to practice being aware of your surroundings and what is changing. You should intuitively know what you are doing, it is what other people are doing that changes your choices. In most endeavors I think you are best served by knowing what is happening around you rather than what is happening in your head.  

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote: Why

Beyond Saving wrote:

 Why would you want to be more absorbed with yourself? I think most people have the opposite problem of not being aware of their surroundings because they are too busy inside their own heads. I have witnessed people hunting and walking right past the game they are looking for because they are not paying attention. People at the poker table too busy thinking about their own hand that they miss blatant indications of weakness from their opponent. People in business spend so much time focussed on what they are doing that they ignore their customers.

Yeah, and look what became of them. Sport killers, gamblers and money makers Smiling It's like being on meth, I don't know where I'm going, but I hurry there really fast. Not only I don't know where I'm going, I don't know who I am and where I'm coming from. That's the insanity of western civilization. Eastern civilization has a different kind of madness. 

Beyond Saving wrote:
I think it is far better to practice being aware of your surroundings and what is changing. You should intuitively know what you are doing, it is what other people are doing that changes your choices. In most endeavors I think you are best served by knowing what is happening around you rather than what is happening in your head.  

Yes, in most endeavors - but are these activities what we really want and need? What the world needs? Or we're just governed by economic pressure, and somewhat better at following it blindly, calling it success?
People don't know what are they doing. They have information, like a name of their job, but they have no understanding of what the it means, its social, health, economic and ecologic impact, or why they do it, if they truly want to do it or not, or what else would they really want to do in their life. Einstein was a good post officer. Franz Kafka was a good insurance officer. Lots of people today does paperwork, that should be all digitalized and they should become what they really are, which is always better than the alternative.

You seem to misunderstand introversion. You call it being absorbed with yourself, but that is a failure of the process. It's about as right as writing a loop error in the program. People continually think of who had done them wrong, etc, but that is not creative.
It should be an endeavour of revealing the self as it really is, without pretending, without glamour and sentiment. When I see myself, I can tell what I don't like and transform the vices into virtues. In the end, the self becomes purified and disciplined. Everyone around will benefit from it. It is a great gift we can give to other people, spare them of our vices.

 

Yeah, I do a lot of introversion and self-development. So much, that every year I feel like a total idiot about last year. No shit. I've systematically uncovered so many vices, ignorance, falsehood and so on in my person. Specially some period in last summer, that was transit of Venus over my native Lilith and it was quite a hell to go through. I got into a strange state of mind, in which my subconsciousness became visible and my worst vices with that. I had some opinion about myself and suddenly saw, that this opinion was wrong, empty, downright absurd. I was numb with surprise for a week. There's not everything pretty or easy with introspection, when you do it right. Quite oppositely it's bloody fight, for long time at first, the more you poke in, the more filth is revealed. Seeing ourselves as we truly are, without sentiment is a terrible sight. So terrible, that I was quite aware of my own blindness in regard to self, I knew there is something hidden and I must become strong enough to be able to face it.

But there are rewards also. Knowing our own weaknesses is the best cure against psychologically projecting them on other people. If you know yourself, you suddenly meet less idiots and even if yes, you don't get so angry at them. You get resistant to most of insults. There comes a lot of peace, even love towards people in general, acceptance, patience, altruism... I know it sounds like hippie ballad, but that's some of what I found.

There is one personal quality that I love and admire. It is the ability to make fun out of oneself. Not letting others do it, nor being ridiculous, it is a rare quality of humorous, detached self-reflection. I don't know many people who can do it, but it's like the highest kind of selfless awareness, being so aware of own misadventures, that one can find them humorous and thereby entertain also others. Such a person does not lose any dignity in my eyes.

So what do I actually do? Not much, really. Besides studying a couple of systems of psychological evaluation (MBTI, astrology, esoteric psychology, amateur psychology) not much. Watching my  dreams for signs, watching my consciousness for hints of intuition, and so on. Consciousness is like flashlight and subconsciousness is like a vast dark gallery of paintings.
Clearly, that is not enough. I have explored my innerverse relatively well, but the outside remains mysterious. I need more opportunities to study my outer behavior and how and why people react or don't react to it. That is something I don't yet have well covered, because simply I can't ask people for opinion later, they even don't have any. That's what people have girlfriends for. And journalists.
 

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I think most people really

I think most people really do have little awareness of the workings of their own thoughts.

One of the things I seem to have 'trained' my mind to do is to have a running review of what I am hearing from someone speaking to me, including my own processing of the words, so I catch myself when I may have jumped to a hasty conclusion about the meaning of what is being said. This is triggered when it stops making sense, so I try and do a 'rewind' while the words are still in short term memory. This seems to help me avoid making some of the more silly mistakes. It works to some extent while taking in visual information as well. Try and pick up on some odd perception while you are in a position to re-check what it might have been, before it has been processed too much, and much of the raw information thrown away.

it is also important to be aware of your own gut reactions to things, and be able to force yourself to re-examine something when there could be a possibility you have jumped to a hasty conclusion. And be very skeptical of intuition.

I have found learning as much as possible about the latest scientific research on how our minds/brains work, and how they can misfire, as distinct from how we think they work, is extremely useful in understanding both my own failings and how to judge and deal with information from, and the behavior of, other people.

 

Favorite oxymorons: Gospel Truth, Rational Supernaturalist, Business Ethics, Christian Morality

"Theology is now little more than a branch of human ignorance. Indeed, it is ignorance with wings." - Sam Harris

The path to Truth lies via careful study of reality, not the dreams of our fallible minds - me

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Luminon wrote: Yeah, and

Luminon wrote:

 Yeah, and look what became of them. Sport killers, gamblers and money makers Smiling It's like being on meth, I don't know where I'm going, but I hurry there really fast. Not only I don't know where I'm going, I don't know who I am and where I'm coming from. That's the insanity of western civilization. Eastern civilization has a different kind of madness. 

Guilty as charged with the exception that generally I know exactly where I am going and usually have some idea of where I will end up.

Luminon wrote:

You seem to misunderstand introversion. You call it being absorbed with yourself, but that is a failure of the process. It's about as right as writing a loop error in the program. People continually think of who had done them wrong, etc, but that is not creative.
It should be an endeavour of revealing the self as it really is, without pretending, without glamour and sentiment. When I see myself, I can tell what I don't like and transform the vices into virtues. In the end, the self becomes purified and disciplined. Everyone around will benefit from it. It is a great gift we can give to other people, spare them of our vices.........

I have explored my innerverse relatively well, but the outside remains mysterious. I need more opportunities to study my outer behavior and how and why people react or don't react to it. That is something I don't yet have well covered, because simply I can't ask people for opinion later, they even don't have any. That's what people have girlfriends for. And journalists. 

Wouldn't the easiest way to see yourself for what you are be to watch other peoples reactions to you? For example, I know I am a sport killer, gambler and money maker. The only real question I have to answer is whether I am happy with that life, to which I answer a solid yes. I think the mistake many people make is that they consider themselves to be far more important to the world than they really are. I agree that understanding your weaknesses and being honest with yourself is extremely important. But finding such weaknesses and honesty through observing the outside world seems far more efficient to me than attempting to find it through meditation. It is much easier to lie to yourself than it is to lie to people who know you well. You can develop an opinion of yourself only to discover that the rest of the world has a completely different opinion. Since the opinion of everyone else has a much more immediate impact on your life isn't that the important one to understand?

 

 

 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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Beyond Saving wrote:Wouldn't

Beyond Saving wrote:

Wouldn't the easiest way to see yourself for what you are be to watch other peoples reactions to you? For example, I know I am a sport killer, gambler and money maker. The only real question I have to answer is whether I am happy with that life, to which I answer a solid yes. I think the mistake many people make is that they consider themselves to be far more important to the world than they really are.

Glad to see you're happy with your life, whatever it is. I think self-realization (in harmony with environment and society) is the best purpose of life one can have, whatever it is.

You say, people think of themselves more important for the world than they are? Interesting. I haven't seen that yet, but I'm not good observer of people. Furthermore, every time I tried to act like someone of common importance for the world, I failed. It's not like myself. To be myself, I have to behave like someone with above-average potential of achieving great things, otherwise I get in trouble. Looks like people should be aware how important they can be, not more and not less. Some people are potentially important, regardless how small statistical occurence it is, and for the good of world and themselves they should not underestimate their purpose. That would be in my case a false modesty, hypocrisy, lazines and neglectfulness, to not realize fully such a greater potential and neglect the work that might be done.

 

Beyond Saving wrote:
I agree that understanding your weaknesses and being honest with yourself is extremely important. But finding such weaknesses and honesty through observing the outside world seems far more efficient to me than attempting to find it through meditation. It is much easier to lie to yourself than it is to lie to people who know you well. You can develop an opinion of yourself only to discover that the rest of the world has a completely different opinion. Since the opinion of everyone else has a much more immediate impact on your life isn't that the important one to understand?

Well, I'm not good at observing people. Thanks to lots of getting offended, bullied, annoyed and suffering, I mostly got tired of these feelings and gave up on hating people or suspecting them. It was partially my fault anyway, I knew nothing about people's psychology. So wearing proverbial pink glasses, I rarely see people as they really are. I often see the goodness in them, never mean them any harm, and I presume they will behave according to that goodness. And they often do, when they are with me they often behave better than otherwise. Looks like I charm my way through the crowd of people most of the time.


That was pretty obvious when I worked at car factory, I worked with women mostly and naturally there was a lot of gossip, slanders, ill will, narkery, refusal of cooperation among workers, bad mood, and even some religious bigotry. But seriously, I saw almost none of that. I planted among the workers seeds of good will, cooperation, friendship, fun, tolerance and never any judgement or condemnation. Frankly, I loved the gossips and I'd like to hear them even about me, such a boredom there was at work. And if someone there did something ugly, it raised rather my interest in a pathologies of mind, rather than hate towards that person. I know, hippie ballad of flower power again, but can't help it.

So shortly said, an observer in my case influences the observed object too much to be sure about anything. The most I know about real people is from hearsay.

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Beyond Saving
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Luminon wrote:You say,

Luminon wrote:

You say, people think of themselves more important for the world than they are? Interesting. I haven't seen that yet, but I'm not good observer of people.

Well to be fair, that might be a mostly American trait. 

 

If, if a white man puts his arm around me voluntarily, that's brotherhood. But if you - if you hold a gun on him and make him embrace me and pretend to be friendly or brotherly toward me, then that's not brotherhood, that's hypocrisy.- Malcolm X


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What I have noticed about

What I have noticed about myself is that, when I am engaged in a discussion (either on a forum, chatroom, or in person) I don't take a solid standpoint on any idea. It's kind of funny that you noticed that so early in my membership, BobSpence. I actually do love asking questions. You might disagree with that practice, but I use the information I get from the answers for my own purpose. Instead of trying to openly solidify my own ideas TO other people (which seems to be the common practice on this website), I will absorb the ideas OF other people and ponder on them for days, weeks, months even. I enjoy taking extreme ideas, posing them as questions, and getting the whatever response I get. Positive, warm and fuzzy; or negative and mean - it doesn't really matter to me. I use that information to formulate my opinions on human behavioral psychology, interpersonal communication, and the human interaction as a whole. I fully understand that the things I say are ridiculous and far fetched, but that's okay because I'm looking for specific information. 

I went on a bit of a tangent after I mentioned you, BobSpence. My original point was that I don't hold a bias towards either end of a discussion or debate. I actually love watching and formulating a possible reply to the statements of all parties involved. Will I reply? No, for some reason whenever I enter a debate it tends to get messier than it needs to be. But that does include throwing in the occasional off the wall question just to stir the pot, and sometimes an appropriate question to get clarity or further understand a subject. It's wonderful! But as far as sharing my opinions? Any one person will only see my true opinions when I share the things I value most - loyalty, respect, honesty, kindness, family, and friends. Otherwise, it's all open for interpretation. 

That's my self-awareness speech. 8D How'd I do?!


 

 

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Ch3sty1775 wrote:What I have

Ch3sty1775 wrote:

What I have noticed about myself is that, when I am engaged in a discussion (either on a forum, chatroom, or in person) I don't take a solid standpoint on any idea. It's kind of funny that you noticed that so early in my membership, BobSpence. I actually do love asking questions. You might disagree with that practice, but I use the information I get from the answers for my own purpose. Instead of trying to openly solidify my own ideas TO other people (which seems to be the common practice on this website), I will absorb the ideas OF other people and ponder on them for days, weeks, months even. I enjoy taking extreme ideas, posing them as questions, and getting the whatever response I get. Positive, warm and fuzzy; or negative and mean - it doesn't really matter to me. I use that information to formulate my opinions on human behavioral psychology, interpersonal communication, and the human interaction as a whole. I fully understand that the things I say are ridiculous and far fetched, but that's okay because I'm looking for specific information. 

I went on a bit of a tangent after I mentioned you, BobSpence. My original point was that I don't hold a bias towards either end of a discussion or debate. I actually love watching and formulating a possible reply to the statements of all parties involved. Will I reply? No, for some reason whenever I enter a debate it tends to get messier than it needs to be. But that does include throwing in the occasional off the wall question just to stir the pot, and sometimes an appropriate question to get clarity or further understand a subject. It's wonderful! But as far as sharing my opinions? Any one person will only see my true opinions when I share the things I value most - loyalty, respect, honesty, kindness, family, and friends. Otherwise, it's all open for interpretation. 

That's my self-awareness speech. 8D How'd I do?!

I know it seems like I'm picking on you, but I'm not.  You keep making accusations, and are overall very unclear.  The only thing MOST of us share on this forum is the fact that we're skeptics and we don't believe in god.  Otherwise we debate all the time.  When you make a claim that is illogical or theistic in nature, everyone will seem like they're on the same 'side', against you.  

I admire what you're trying to do here, and I'll give you bonus points for creativity, but you're still being illogical.  Granted redneF's style is a bit rough, but he is employing logic, and when it comes down to it, I'll take an asshole that makes sense over an extremely nice nonsensical person any day.

"Don't seek these laws to understand. Only the mad can comprehend..." -- George Cosbuc


Ch3sty1775
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I know it seems like I'm

 

You don't have to be sweet and remind me that you're not trying to pick on me - if you do pick on me then I welcome it. The accusations I make and being unclear is part of the way I learn best. Again, it's hard for me to explain it but I learn by sitting on the sidelines and watching the game, and every once in a while I'll throw in my statements just to get a rise out of people. 

I'm not trying to be logical, I'm trying to be ridiculous. I want your opinions and I want your ideas. By presenting to you wild accusations and allegations and hearing your responses, I'm able to use your responses to formulate my own set of ideas and do research on them. 
 

I don't need admiration. Just continue doing what you're doing. If you see me saying something stupid, then argue it. I'm enjoying it, really, I am. 

Tell 'em that God's gunna cut you down.


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Beyond Saving wrote:Wouldn't

Beyond Saving wrote:

Wouldn't the easiest way to see yourself for what you are be to watch other peoples reactions to you? For example, I know I am a sport killer, gambler and money maker. The only real question I have to answer is whether I am happy with that life, to which I answer a solid yes. I think the mistake many people make is that they consider themselves to be far more important to the world than they really are. I agree that understanding your weaknesses and being honest with yourself is extremely important. But finding such weaknesses and honesty through observing the outside world seems far more efficient to me than attempting to find it through meditation. It is much easier to lie to yourself than it is to lie to people who know you well. You can develop an opinion of yourself only to discover that the rest of the world has a completely different opinion. Since the opinion of everyone else has a much more immediate impact on your life isn't that the important one to understand?

 

Well, I grew up in a fundie community and a good number liked to be high. I learned watching other's people reaction to me is the last place to find out who I am. In fact, I developed a lot of negative opinions of myself paying attention to them. Listening to my thoughts and feelings, watching my reactions to others and outside events has been a far better way to see me. People generally have their own agendas running, reacting out of that, and I am not all that important to them. I don't write that as a bad thing. They need to take care of their lives just as I need to take care of mine. Now I can consider others opinion of me and weigh it and I mostly I find it funny these days, which was not the case when I was living under Jesus' roof. 

 

Edit: grammar, etc.

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