"Did you ever feel like an alien who somehow became stranded on a planet called Earth where nothing seemed to make any sense?" A quote from "Ming The Merciless"
Recovering from civilization can be brutal but neccessary if we are to become truly free from it's influence. Kick the civilization habit here!
The idea that we can live successfully without achieving a certain level of self awareness probably depends on what we think of as successful living. To me, successful living is not only about having material wealth, but also peace, happiness and spiritual well being. In a normal world where the human being is allowed to develop naturally these things might come as part of that natural developmental process. But that is not our world today. Today we must explore and discover our creative power and learn how to use it correctly and this will demand that we also explore ourselves, and this of course is the real challenge.
One of the most popular definitions of success is what I call 'success by drone'. This is where we are fortunate enough (or not) to grow up and just fall into the 'program'. The program is where we get funneled through the system according to societies needs. Go through the school system, get absorbed into the job market, get two point two children and have a house with two point two cars, suddenly find yourself old and die. Is ignorance bliss or is it just ignorance?
There are many who actually believe that not becoming aware of ourselves is a blessing. I can so relate with them! Especially at those times when in the course of my own personal journey of self awareness I encounter those less than attractive truths about myself, the truths that don't fit my fantasy version of myself, and take a while to get used to. It is during these times that I question the need for self discovery.
Personal creative power is closely associated with personal responsibility, but just how do you perceive these concepts? Is your understanding of these two concepts only intellectual or do you feel them, live them, experience them as behavior. It's all about the levels of awareness that we are able to achieve at any given time in our lives. On the one hand we can understand things on an intellectual level of awareness which is really only perceiving a conceptual version of the actual reality and is very safe, and on the other hand, we can know these two ideas as actual mental, emotional and physical experiences that are integral parts of what we are and how we are what we are, which requires some risk.
An example of this can be experienced during meditation when we come to realize that there are different levels of thoughts. One is mindful thinking where we are thinking thoughts that are related to the present moment experience. The other is when our abstract mind has the power of our focus and attention and begins thinking thoughts that are not part of the present moment but rather an imaginary level of reality where usually our undisciplined ego is running the show and interpreting everything and responding to those interpretations. It is this world that we tell ourselves is the real world.
Achieving self awareness is the only way of piercing the vail of that delusion in order to see reality clearly as it truly is. The real problem here is that this includes seeing the reality of ourselves clearly as well, and this is where the fight or flight response starts up. Most people believe that this resistance is based on some terrible ugly realization that we might stumble upon if we go down this path, but the usual truth is much more ordinary. It's just because it is unfamiliar territory and we are afraid of change and this in fact is why we are unable to live in the present moment where life is an ongoing process of dynamically changing phenomenon of which we are a part.
But can we realistically expect to live a truly successful and fulfilling life without realizing our true nature and our creative power and how to use that power? How can we be in command of anything without a deep and complete awareness of what is going on? We have in the past, and continue even now to pay a high price for our obsession with the material version of reality, and part of that price is that we fail to realize the significance of the inner world which ironically is the source of that very material reality we are so fascinated with.
To be confident in our ability to be successful at anything we attempt, we must have a reasonably good grip on what is real and what is not and why. Otherwise we will always be out of sync, out of touch and unable to tune ourselves to the rhythm of life around us. Power, success and self awareness are integral elements of the process of awakening to the true nature of reality. It may not be the easiest path to travel, but what of any genuine lasting value have you ever encountered that comes easy? Self realization isn't only about difficulty and seeing negative things in ourselves. You are just as likely to discover good and positive things that you may not have ever suspected existed. Give it a try and you won't be disappointed.
There is a great e-book that explores success and power here.