SPIRITUAL TERMINOLOGY AND MEANINGS

Browse spiritual terminology and meanings by letter:

Consciousness

What is consciousness?

The term consciousness, within a spiritual context, refers to varyings types or states of conscious awareness. Consciousness is our ability to be self-aware: our thoughts, ideas, beliefs. The intangible aspects of ourselves.

What is consciousness made of? Where does it come from? This is what we’re exploring when we talk about spirit.

A fundamental principle of spirituality is that consciousness and energy are one and the same. That means that because everything, even the physical matter in the universe, is made of energy, that everything is also consciousness, even if in a latent, non-aware form.

Altered State of Consciousness

An altered state of consciousness refers to any state of awareness other than beta state–the fully awake, alert state that you experience most of the day. Altered states of consciousness have been achieved by various cultures throughout history in a variety of ways, including prayer, meditation, ingesting hallucinogenic plants, dance, yoga, chanting, ritual, and any other activity that causes a change in brainwaves. Altered states of consciousness are a tool to connect with one’s intuition and with higher consciousness.

Christ Consciousness

Christ consciousness refers to attaining a level of embodied awareness similar to that of Jesus Christ. In New Age spirituality, Jesus is considered an ascended master and a representation of a self-actualized, enlightened human being. Christ consciousness is the embodiment of higher consciousness in a physical body, available to all humans and the pinnacle of human potential.

Collective Consciousness

The collective consciousness, from a spiritual perspective, refers to the totality of humanity’s shared belief systems, values, attitudes, and current, often limited level of spiritual awareness. We gauge our global level of consciousness by analyzing the collective consciousness.

Collective Unconscious

The collective unconscious is a term from Jungian psychology that references the part of the unconscious mind that is connected to ancestral experiences and memories and is shared by all of humanity. In spiritual terms, the collective unconscious is considered an energy field of the shared human experience and is the gateway through which we experience interconnectedness with all of humanity.

Expansion of Consciousness

Otherwise known as the evolution of consciousness, to expand one’s consciousness means to become more aware of one’s self, the world, and the people around them. An expansion of consciousness results in a greater and deeper understanding of all of these things.

Higher Consciousness

Higher consciousness refers to the highest, most expansive levels of awareness and understanding, wherein one has the ability to see and understand that Love is the fundamental building-block of the Universe and that it is omni-present throughout our experience.

Separation Consciousness

Separation consciousness is a lower level of awareness wherein a person cannot perceive the interconnectedness of all beings, or their connection to their own divinity and God/Source. Within spirituality, it may also manifest as narratives of total Individualism, or the belief that every person’s absolute reality is created and experienced solely by them, and as such, every individual is responsible for every trauma they experience and all of their life circumstances. Absolute Individualism devolves into separation consciousness when it ignores the interconnectedness of all beings, obscures the concept of co-creation, and denies social responsibility.

Unconscious

Unconscious refers to a lack of spiritual awareness and understanding. It may also be used to describe someone who is unaware of the subconscious habits, patterns, and belief systems which drive their behavior.

Unity Consciousness

Unity consciousness also refers to higher consciousness, specifically the aspect of higher consciousness that recognizes its interconnectedness with the Universe and everything in it. It is the opposite of separation consciousness.

RELATED TERMS

Ascension
Energy

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