What is awareness? One of the questions we asked ourselves here at Schochwitz castle the other day. With so many people here (we recently welcomed another volunteer from Argentina) there are a lot of opportunities to learn new things and explore different points of view. One of the areas where we have been able to explore many different points of view, for example, is on the meaning of 'good housekeeping'; and one of the lessons we have learnt is that the more people we are, the less efficiently anything gets done. Why is this? For one thing, no one is too sure what anyone else is up to: has someone taken care of the washing, am I supposed to be cleaning that room, and who has moved the vacuum cleaner? Needless to say the confusion has caused a lot of fun. And this is where awareness comes in.
Awareness is a word that gets used in a variety of situations - 'show awareness of peoples feelings', 'they displayed political and environmental awareness', 'you have no awareness of your surroundings' - but for me it means being conscious of your environment, and how you can impact on it. If we had been more aware, we would have seen the work the others were doing, and we would have known how to do it when they didn't; We would have seen that some people were doing more housework than others, and we would have taken our turn - or we would have seen that someone always misses a certain area and reminded them to do it; we would have gained a wider view of how life in the castle is run, and also have a better idea of how we can help out and fit in.
Obviously we all now have complete awareness of what is going on around us, and no longer have any problems what so ever. But because this lesson benefited us so much, we thought we might share it with you too. Let's all try to be a little more aware.