Within the purview of human consciousness, awareness is an important concept. Awareness can be defined as that point of attention within a living entity where the present now manifests. When we say that somebody is living unconsciously, it means that one is conducting one’s life without sufficient and intense attention. Although somebody may be “brilliant” in terms of academic achievements or a person of enormous Intelligence quotient , it is very much possible that these people conduct their lives unaware without sufficient attention. This factor is very important especially in the context of Bhakti and executing devotional service.
Awareness is that aspect of internal vigilance which checks the way we think, we behave, we conduct ourselves. It is the coefficient of our honesty, our value system and a reminder of our alignment with the Absolute. When one is casual about one’s conduct or with the way one is leading one’s life, it is evident that one is leading life without “awareness”. This is the way that animals conduct their lives. The first results of sadhana and bhajana is the birth of heightened awareness. If awareness is not born of such sadhana and bhajana it should be safely concluded that the spiritual practices that one is practicing is either from an unauthentic source or it is not performed with the right goals in mind , the goal or Prayojana of Krishna Seva Prapti ( Service to the divine couple in the highest spiritual domain). When one is sufficiently sincere with one’s bhajana practices, awareness of high intensity is born.
The birth of heightened awareness is indicated by a reality check process that is triggered within the heart where the sadhaka or aspirant is extremely conscious of what one is thinking, saying or doing. One develops the mood of a student. The aspect of humility is awakened automatically. One never pre-supposes anything. One becomes extremely vigilant towards false assumptions and over-confidence. When awareness of the “present” is born, one becomes free from the baggage of so-called experience of the past which is to be considered simply waste accumulation of our contaminated consciousness of the past years and is actually worthless. When one is wakened to the inner awareness, higher understanding develops. The past is considered to be of absolute no-value with respect to the new birth which manifests out of the sadhana bhajana process. The more a person is attached to the past experiences, the slower will be the awakening of intense awareness. Unless the past is reduced to ashes on the basis of devotional service, the drudgery of an unaware life will continue and Maya will continue to torment the living entity.
Higher understanding born out of living in the present with awareness will automatically imbue one with Vaishnava “Sadachar” (moralistic actions) and “Shishtachar” (higher discipline). Higher understanding of life is the basis of harmony. There is harmonization of even seemingly contradictory views when one attains higher understanding. The thesis, antithesis and synthesis of all that is mundane is seen in relation with the working of the Absolute. Such harmonization results in the spiritualization of things that are seemingly mundane. An intelligence of this sort only develops out of the higher understanding born out of awareness. A person who dedicates his life to the path of bhajana and sadhana thoroughly is only blessed. Mental speculation is the result of analysis of the subject matter of the mundane. However when the same analysis is done with respect to the absolute through awareness, there is no question of speculation of any kind. That which is revealed in the heart of the pure devotee is simply taken as the “view” given to him by the Absolute reality that we call Krishna!