Am I usually aware that I am living?

Commentary by José Parés Pérez, Concepción, Chile.

Depending on the point of view you use to assess the value of our faculties, thinking can have a very high value as well as being the main cause of our most severe conflicts

Thinking has a fundamental consequence for our states of mind; that is for our ability to perceive, feel and sense ourselves. We experience the emotions we feel with the same degree of intensity whether we are experiencing them in our own way as part of our real lives or when we are just thinking or imagining them.

Explained crudely, to make it easier to compete with the way we see ourselves, we are a being that is capable of realising when it likes or dislikes something out of all the elements that it can detect inside or outside itself. It perceives, feels, classifies and stores everything in accordance with its own classification system. None of the inner process it goes through is lost; it can remember and it does so on a permanent basis.

That is its universe. What is stored is the reality for that being. Moreover, it should be added that the being also finds it difficult to accept that what it perceives as reality is not exactly the way things are. The most usual thing for a being like that is to think that life is a time when it has to progress based on its own ability to fight against problems. It considers that its greatest achievement is to escape from itself, from being aware, from realising that it is alive. It has conditioned itself to prefer to be distracted rather than to think or sense what life is showing it, its own inner desires, fears, anxieties, worries, guilt, addictions etc. Living outside itself, is its way of life.

In many cases, it is also true that these people have never been taught that living in such a way that they are conscious of being alive is the source of the harmony, consistency and peace that form the backdrop of our true lives.