On Group Consciousness

What is group-consciousness? It is an awareness within each person of the other group members, and of the whole. It can be developed in well-run companies with an eye on more than the bottom line. It can be seen in churches and non-profit organizations where self-centered behavior is set aside, though this is not so easy to do. (If we observe our own thoughts for ten minutes, which is also much easier said than done, we soon realize we are each the center of our own universe.)

Why is awareness beyond our personal selves important? It is an antidote for the problems of our world. Alone, we add static to life. Together, we make peace in our world. It’s difficult enough within a marriage to set aside what we want long enough to hear what’s important to our partner—so how will we ever arrive at the understanding that people different from us are as valuable to the whole human race as we are?

It’s in the process of getting to know each other. Every person’s life, no matter his skin color, is an important story. All people, no matter their religions, hurt at times. Every person, regardless of her level of education, has dreams and hopes. Every person is loved unconditionally by our Creator.

What can we do about group-consciousness today? Banish fear and reach out and say hello and Happy Holidays. Smile. Help someone with something. Meet others and hear what they’re saying, in a class, a community center, even at a party. The more we listen, the more listening spreads, because listening affirms our value and once any of us realizes how truly valuable we are, it’s not long until we realize we’re all valuable.

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