A few years back, as my interest to define, understand and live consciously woke, I started reading a small introductory book to the concept of consciousness and the separation existing between body and mind if any at all. The collection of books to which a friend introduced me, is definitely my favourite collection of what is known as “popular science”. I never understood those philosophers and scientists who write on purpose in a way no one can understand but a few that share their lingo and these series of books, explaining quite complex concepts in an easy way by using drawings caught my love since.
To define consciousness, the author of the book “Introducing Consciousness” asked the following question to explain what consciousness is empirically: What does it feel like to be a bat? Asking the reader to try to answer this question.
What does it feel like to be? Is a powerful question. It let’s us put ourselves in the place of living beings we never thought of taking the place of. A few hours ago visiting a local business the owner had a dog. The dog’s love for life and joy for simple and harmless things as the Sun’s warmth from the newly started Spring are an example of absolute presence that inspired me.
I think often of humankind’s destiny. I observe how the big challenges we face turn from unknown facts to fads to talk about. People speak emptily about issues like climate change. They speak about how “someone needs to do something” without stopping to reflect about what’s their part of the deal. They are all for wind powered energy but do not want to have wind farms remotely close to their homes because reasons as “the view”. Little they realize that unless there is collective change soon there will be no view to enjoy. Few thinking of natural ways of sourcing the energy the consume, reviewing the processes under which their businesses operate or using products consciously in a different way that respects better the balance of our world.
As life goes by, and I get to experience people’s different ways of life this question proofs its power: What does it feel like to be him? Her? Them? Earth? Maybe this is the question that will allows us to get a better understanding of the role we play in the whole we call life. Maybe this question will allow us to get out of our self and the tiny part of the world we understand to see and feel like the whole. Maybe tapping in this common consciousness will be the only way in which our actions will become naturally sustainable and will allow the path of evolution to continues with humankind in it.