Are You Consciousness?
In modern times, the term consciousness has gained prestige among many philosophers and spiritualists. Consciousness (7) is defined as:
“the quality or state of being aware especially of something within oneself.”
John Locke (8), a 7th century English philosopher, recognized the previously mentioned limitations of identity and postulated that the continuity of human conscious experience was the source of a person’s identity. It was an improvement to the old worldview, but he believed memory was a necessary component to self. In other words, you have to have memory of the old you to continue having the same identity.
But what about an individual who suffers from amnesia or brain damage? Does their identity change with the loss of memory or other cognitive functions? Despite the change in their awareness, there is still something unchanged about them. There is still a coherence to their existence.
Furthermore, as we experience life our awareness generally expands. We learn more about ourselves and the world around us. This is a positive change, but a change none the less. Remember, we are looking for sameness.
You are not the vessel from which you experience life because it changes. You are not the collective traits, beliefs, and emotional dispositions that you exhibit within your experience because they change. You are not the mind from which your experience is interpreted because it is changes. And you are not the awareness of your experience because it changes.
So who are you?…