State awareness is a term coined by Richard Barrett, a renowned author, speaker, and thought leader on the evolution of human values. This worldview dates back 5,000 years, where villages evolved into towns, towns into cities, and cities into fortified states that protected their citizens. In this worldview, statehood is the primary factor that differentiates one’s identity, and power, wealth, and knowledge hierarchies stratify the population. While this worldview has evolved over time, it still persists in modern society and has negative implications for sustainability.
In this post, we will explore the origins of state awareness, its manifestation in today’s society, the corresponding psychological development stage, and the behavioral characteristics that affect sustainability. Understanding the presence of state awareness in modern society can help us identify and address its negative impact on the environment and resources, promoting sustainable practices and values to move towards a more equitable and just society.
The historical roots of power hierarchies
Worldview of power and hierarchy emerged when cities and states grew in size, wealth, and power. Populations were stratified into hierarchies of power, wealth, and knowledge, with the most powerful ruling. Justice was administered through physical mutilation of the body, where an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth was considered normal.
The concept of honor and shame became an integral part of this worldview, and preserving one’s family honor while avoiding shame was essential. This led to discrimination against women, servants, and slaves, who were regarded as personal property. Leaders demanded loyalty and constant praise and adoration, and corruption and intrigue were rampant. This worldview also fostered the creation of empires through invasion and plunder, which had lasting impacts on the environment and resources.
The negative effects of authoritarianism and its impact on society
Leaders in the worldview of state awareness still demand loyalty and constant praise and adoration. Discrimination and homophobia are pervasive, and citizens are afraid to demonstrate against the regime. The worldview is prevalent in criminal organizations, gangs, and drug barons, who embrace machismo.
The negative effects of state awareness include impulsive decision-making, lack of empathy, and a disregard for the well-being of others. This worldview also leads to the exploitation of resources and environmental degradation, which affects sustainability.
The cosmology of hierarchical belief systems
The cosmology of state awareness shifted from a reverence for the spirits of ancestors to a reverence for a pantheon of gods. The corresponding psychological development stage is the differentiating stage, where personal recognition through displays of power and physical strength, beauty, and sexuality is the focus. Individuals in this stage tend to become manipulative, aggressive, and misogynistic, with a lack of empathy.
The harmful effects of power hierarchies on the environment and society
The principal behavioral markers of state awareness include hierarchies of power, honor and shame, treating women as sexual objects, lack of punishment for sexual assault, sports that involve violence or death, justice administered by physical mutilation or death, elites rarely punished, acceptance of torture, and cruelty to people and animals.
These characteristics have negative implications for sustainability, as they lead to the exploitation of resources and environmental degradation. Understanding the presence of state awareness in modern society can help us take steps to address its negative impact and promote sustainability.
The shift from state awareness to nation awareness
The shift from state awareness to nation awareness can be traced back to the rise of nationalism in the 19th century. Before the 19th century, most people identified primarily with their local communities and regions rather than with their nation. However, the industrial revolution and the growth of nation-states created a new sense of national identity based on shared culture, language, history, and values.
The transition to nation awareness involved a shift in values from a focus on power and hierarchies to a sense of national identity and belonging. Nationalism promoted national unity and social cohesion by creating a shared identity and sense of purpose among citizens. This new sense of national identity also enabled the creation of institutions and policies that fostered the common good, such as public education, healthcare, and social welfare programs.
State awareness is a historical worldview that still exists in modern society and has negative implications for sustainability. Understanding its origins, manifestation in today’s society, corresponding psychological development stage, and behavioral characteristics can help us identify and address its negative impact on the environment and resources. Promoting sustainable practices and values can help us move towards a more equitable and just society.
Examples of state awareness: authoritarianism, loyalty, and corruption
- In ancient China, the concept of the Mandate of Heaven emphasized the importance of the emperor’s power and authority in governing the country, with a hierarchical system of power and wealth.
- The Roman Empire was an example of state awareness, where power, wealth, and knowledge hierarchies stratified the population and justice was often administered through physical punishment.
- Feudal Europe was characterized by a system of lords and vassals, with power and wealth concentrated among the ruling class and a strict code of honor and shame.
- During the colonization period, European powers established colonies in Africa and Asia, plundering their resources and creating hierarchies of power and wealth.
In modern times, examples of state awareness include authoritarian regimes in North Korea, Saudi Arabia, and other countries, where leaders demand absolute loyalty and corruption and intrigue are rampant.