spirituality

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The interaction between objectives and abilities

  In our day-to-day lives we find that someone who is already good at playing football in most cases also likes to play football very much and would like to constantly improve his football skills. If a good programmer has the choice between jointly working on a forward-looking software project and working in a vegetable shop the chances are usually significantly greater that the programmer will stay true to his line of business and would like to develop further within it. The same is true for practically all abilities: If we can already do something well the motivation is greater to use this ability and to improve it.

It is therefore worthwhile investigating the relationship between our abilities and the corresponding objective. We have already established earlier that we don’t develop our abilities without reason, but rather we develop them specifically to be able to achieve a certain goal. From the above examples it is however clear that a stimulation also occurs in the reverse direction: Already-existing abilities lead us to continue to pursue the corresponding goal – and under certain circumstances even more strongly than before. We will therefore now introduce a model to demonstrate our objectives:

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My personal contribution

 

The expansion of our awareness is only possible through solving those tasks which are matched to the actual status of our training. The tackling of tasks which are «too difficult» does not lead to any kind of acceleration of our development. In fact it is the opposite, it leads to a slowing down or even to a standstill or to steps backwards. The same is also true where the demands are insufficient.

This is immediately obvious in virtually every other form of training: A music student who learns a piece which is too difficult for him during his training will not make faster progress in his learning process than another musician, who only plays pieces which are matched to his actual abilities. If a good piano player only ever plays quite simple pieces with one hand, in time he loses his ability with the second hand: He takes steps backwards or forgets what he has learned about two-handed piano playing. A car driver who also drives a formula one racing car, will not become a better car driver because of this. A sportsman who trains to run over a length of 5 km will obtain no advantage at all for his 5 km stretch by completing a 42 km marathon, even if he finishes the marathon in a very good time.

Co-responsibility

What about the situation where tasks are carried out by a group of people? Who carries the responsibility for the decisions? Is there such a thing as collective responsibility? How far does the responsibility go within a group in the event of a causal chain of consequences? Can responsibility be shared?

To deal with the most important question here first: There are no changes to the responsibilities. Every person is responsible for the consequences of the decisions which correspond with his awareness, or in the case of the model of the sphere, for all those consequences which take place within his awareness sphere. The co-responsibility in a group or in a company therefore does not primarily depend on the individual employee’s position in the hierarchy, but on his personal development. To return again to the example of supplying war equipment components, it would be theoretically conceivable that the cleaning lady carries co-responsibility and the company directors do not – assuming here that the cleaning lady is personally further developed, in other words she has a higher level of awareness than the members of the board of directors.

The consequences of being overtaxed by a task

 

By carrying out a task which is too demanding, the person carrying it out in the first place impedes his own development. In considering the development of humankind we have seen that further development is only possible in stages. Just as for a pyramid the individual stones and layers must be symmetrically placed on top of one another one layer at a time. If someone is overtaxed by a given task, he is attempting to insert stones into a pyra­mid in which the lower stones are still missing, or are not correctly fixed. It is not possible to leave out individual building stones and then insert them later! Such an attempt is a pure waste of time.

Consequences from the acceptance of tasks

 Since in principle every conceivable task can (and should) serve the further personal development of a person, in the next section we want to consider the acceptance of tasks from this point of view. Everyone can decide for himself whether he wants to accept and carry out a given task. Before someone accepts a task however, it is essential that he checks that the task is suitable for him, i.e. on the one hand whether it is compatible with his personal goals and on the other hand whether he has the necessary abilities for carrying it out. Here we mean not only manual skills or intellectual abilities but also especially awareness. He who takes up a task is responsible for making sure that he has the abilities to solve it.

This is a consequence of self-responsibility: Everyone must be able to freely and independently decide whether he wants to take on a given task or not. It is after all impossible to force someone to carry out a task and then afterwards to make that person responsible for the consequences!

Responsibility is somewhat individual

  We have called the ability to perceive responsibility the awareness of responsibility. The awareness of responsibility cannot be any greater than our general awareness, since the corresponding awareness (of responsibility) is the basis for our perception of the possible consequences of decisions.

The ability to perceive our responsibility is provided within the awareness sphere. Whether this is also perceived is decided in every case by the respective person himself. It is also possible to ignore the respective information or senses. Even if I look away so as not to have to see the results of my decision, in spite of this I am still naturally responsible for these consequences! For the time being however we will assume that the responsibility is always fully perceived.

If I cannot assess the consequences of a decision

We have previously represented awareness with the model of a white sphere around our body. The greater the awareness of a person the greater the diameter of this awareness sphere. With this model we are responsible for all the consequences of our decisions, which take place within our awareness sphere. The light of our awareness is very bright here so that within this sphere we can see or perceive the consequences of our decisions.

 

It is therefore possible to come up with the idea that very far-reaching decisions should be made by people with low awareness, since such people would therefore apparently not be responsible for the consequences. This would not however make sense for several reasons:

The principle of self-responsibility

 

Let’s summarize the previous discussion: From the basic rights of existence each being derives the equal right to live, to develop and to carry out its tasks. Every being can thereby decide for itself what it wants to do or not do (the principle of self-determination). He who is free to decide for himself what he should do or not do is naturally also responsible for the consequences of his decisions. Who otherwise would be responsible for the consequences of a decision if someone can freely decide? From the principle of self-determination there follows therefore the principle of self-responsibility: