Tuesday 17 May 2016

How do you know when you are living in false consciousness?

You probably are living in false consciousness NOW - at least for nearly all the time; because almost everybody in the West lives in false consciousness.

This has a definite meaning - it means that you consciousness, your sense of self-awareness is located in the persona and not the self. Your persona is the public you; the set of learned, automatic, expedient responses built-up through childhood, adolescence and early adulthood. For many - most - people this is where they dwell consciously almost the whole time - with only brief flickers and glimmers of cosciousness from the self.

How do you know where you consciousness is currently located? One way is that when you are living from the self you are aware that everything is alive, communicating, and you respond to this.

If, on the other hand, the 'outer' world is experienced as material, inert, dead, unresponsive, non-communicative; then you are living from your persona: you are in a state of false consciousness.

This is bad, because it is the self which is partly-divine; and living with-out it, your life will have neither meaning nor purpose. 

Note: The self and the persona can be distinguished but not divided or separated - neither can exist without the other and both are always present in a person; and the persona has a vital role. However, we are meant to use the persona only to do jobs that are best done as automatic routine and without constant attention - including skills such as such as driving a car or playing a musical instrument. We are not supposed to have the persona living our lives for us - according to unthinking routine; but that is the sitiation for most modern people most of the time - and apparently for some people all of the time - where the self never gets activated in communication with other people and the environment.

1 comment:

Ben said...

I wonder if I'm living the persona but can't tell because it's all I know. At times when I think I'm becoming distant, things seem duller around me. When I think I'm closer though, things are brighter around me. Is that what you mean by "everything is alive, communicating"?

You've written about this before, the definition of an object's liveliness. It seems to me natural and intuitive though that that's only people and animals.