Understanding Consciousness From A Spiritual Perspective
There are many things that the human race has still not been able to understand fully. Despite all our scientific endeavors, we are still nowhere near the answers we seek. Consciousness is one such concept that we haven’t fully grasped. When you think about it, consciousness doesn’t seem too complicated. After all, we all know that we are conscious beings. And we can say to a degree of accuracy that consciousness means awareness.
However, when you delve deeper into the concept, you realize just how much you don’t know. For starters, we still don’t know which part of the brain is responsible for consciousness. We don’t even know if consciousness is purely a mental phenomenon. We also don’t understand the process through which a person forms their identity. You have a concept of your “self” that is a big part of your consciousness. But where is this located in the body, and how do you come to acquire it? Also, we don’t know if animals and plants experience consciousness the way we do!
Scientists have only recently started to research this area. And it might take them some time to answer these questions and more. In the meantime, we can turn to spirituality to see if we can get our answers. As it turns out, spirituality has a deep understanding of what consciousness is, how it arises, and how it links everything in existence.
Consciousness – A Universal Force
To understand this concept from a spiritual perspective, you need to be open-minded. This is because spirituality looks at it in a completely different way than we usually do. It states that consciousness is a universal force that permeates the whole of existence. It is eternal, meaning that there is no beginning or end to it.
The consciousness that we humans experience is but a microcosm of this larger universal consciousness. And it is not merely a byproduct of our mental processes. Instead, there is this concept of an energy body in spirituality. In religion, it is referred to as the soul. It is this body of yours that is conscious. It is the software to your hardware (your body). So, in essence, you are not your physical body. You are the energy body or the soul which is driving your physical body. This can be tricky to understand, but it explains a lot of things.
So, our energy bodies are microcosms of the larger consciousness, and they animate our physical bodies. Due to this process, we get the idea of the “self” and exercise free will. When the physical body is no longer functional enough, the energy body gets assimilated back into the universal consciousness. This makes death a cosmic illusion because “you” are never really gone. Also, since all of this happens on a metaphysical level, we are all connected. We are all part of the same force, the universal consciousness.