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Awareness, being awake to experiences, is considered an important necessity for achieving balance and to becoming free of stress and tension.
Also called mindfulness, Awareness: The Key to Living In Balance tell readers to experience even the mundane experiences encountered. But, this is not easy to achieve. The mind can find a thousand distractions that takes the attention away from the immediate moment.
Each person is always either in the past or thinking of the future, never fully present in the moment. Whether one is eating or working or talking, one is never fully present where they are, never fully focused on what is being done at the moment.
The mind specializes in multi-tasking. While the person is eating, the mind can be thinking of all the work that needs to be done after the meal. Or it may be focusing on something that happened the day before.
The mind is never silent. It is always noisy, crowded with a thousand thoughts that each try to come to the forefront. When one achieves silence, Osho says that it is a state of no mind, not a silence of the mind. He says that silence is not a quality of the mind.
When the consciousness rises above the mind, silence happens. Once this state is achieved, even awareness of the body disappears and the being just sees everything that is happening as a mere witness. Every moment becomes vivid to this witness.
But this experience of being aware is not easy to achieve. Osho suggests an experiment of trying to observe the seconds hand of a clock for a few minutes. He points out that the mind will not be able to fully concentrate on even this simple act continuously. It will start to wander and after a few moments, the attention will again have to be jerked back to the clock.
But, Osho says that this is how to start the practice of being aware. He asks the reader not to despair if the mind starts going off in different directions, not to waste time in feeling guilty. Instead, continue the practice from where it was broken off.
Practicing being awake and alert to every moment starts with simple sessions, and slowly the practitioner will discover that they are able to stay aware for longer periods of time. This heightened awareness helps a person be more centered and free in all aspects of their life.
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