conscious / conscience Both words have to do with the mind, but it's more important to be conscious, or awake, than conscience, or aware of right and wrong. Remain conscious while listening to your friend's moral dilemma so you can use your conscience to give good advice.

This page was last edited on 4 October , at Several theorists have therefore proposed quantum mind QM theories of consciousness. Doubts were starting to enter into my consciousness. These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'consciousness. Arch Phys Med Rehabil.

consciousness [kon´shus-nes] 1. the state of being conscious; fully alert, aware, oriented, and responsive to the environment. 2. subjective awareness of the aspects of cognitive processing and the content of the mind. 3. the current totality of experience of which an individual or group is aware at any time. 4. in psychoanalysis, the conscious.
Kids Definition of conscious 1: aware of facts, feelings, or some particular condition or situation He was painfully conscious of his many missing buttons.
Definition of consciousness - the state of being aware of and responsive to one's surroundings, a person's awareness or perception of something.
Definition of consciousness - the state of being aware of and responsive to one's surroundings, a person's awareness or perception of something.
conscious / conscience Both words have to do with the mind, but it's more important to be conscious, or awake, than conscience, or aware of right and wrong. Remain conscious while listening to your friend's moral dilemma so you can use your conscience to give good advice.
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con·scious·ness

Definition of conscious from the Collins English Dictionary. Compound nouns. A compound noun is a noun that is formed from two or more words. The meaning of the whole compound is often different from the meaning of the two words on their own. Compound nouns are very common. T.

If you need a reminder. And is one way more correct than the others? The story of an imaginary word that managed to sneak past our editors and enter the dictionary. How to use a word that literally drives some people nuts. The awkward case of 'his or her'. Words to improve your Scrabble game. Test your visual vocabulary with our question challenge! Synonyms for consciousness Synonyms attention , awareness , cognizance , ear , eye , heed , knowledge , mindfulness , note , notice , observance , observation Visit the Thesaurus for More.

Examples of consciousness in a Sentence The medication caused her to enter an altered state of consciousness. The events have become part of the national consciousness. He hopes that he can raise public consciousness of the disease. Recent Examples on the Web Larger exposure can lead to loss of consciousness , convulsions, paralysis and respiratory failure. Relatives of passenger who died on flight sue American Airlines," 27 Apr. First Known Use of consciousness , in the meaning defined at sense 1a.

History and Etymology for consciousness see conscious entry 1. Learn More about consciousness. Resources for consciousness Time Traveler! Explore the year a word first appeared. Dictionary Entries near consciousness conscientious objector conscionable conscious consciousness consciousness-raising conscribe conscript.

Phrases Related to consciousness lose consciousness regain consciousness social consciousness. Time Traveler for consciousness The first known use of consciousness was in See more words from the same year.

More Definitions for consciousness. English Language Learners Definition of consciousness. Kids Definition of consciousness. More from Merriam-Webster on consciousness Thesaurus: Although some philosophers, such as Daniel Dennett , have disputed the validity of this distinction, [29] others have broadly accepted it.

David Chalmers has argued that A-consciousness can in principle be understood in mechanistic terms, but that understanding P-consciousness is much more challenging: Some philosophers believe that Block's two types of consciousness are not the end of the story.

There is also debate over whether or not a-consciousness and p-consciousness always co-exist or if they can exist separately. Although p-consciousness without a-consciousness is more widely accepted, there have been some hypothetical examples of A without P.

Mental processes such as consciousness and physical processes such as brain events seem to be correlated: The first influential philosopher to discuss this question specifically was Descartes , and the answer he gave is known as Cartesian dualism.

Descartes proposed that consciousness resides within an immaterial domain he called res cogitans the realm of thought , in contrast to the domain of material things, which he called res extensa the realm of extension.

Although it is widely accepted that Descartes explained the problem cogently, few later philosophers have been happy with his solution, and his ideas about the pineal gland have especially been ridiculed. Proposed solutions can be divided broadly into two categories: Each of these categories itself contains numerous variants.

The two main types of dualism are substance dualism which holds that the mind is formed of a distinct type of substance not governed by the laws of physics and property dualism which holds that the laws of physics are universally valid but cannot be used to explain the mind. The three main types of monism are physicalism which holds that the mind consists of matter organized in a particular way , idealism which holds that only thought or experience truly exists, and matter is merely an illusion , and neutral monism which holds that both mind and matter are aspects of a distinct essence that is itself identical to neither of them.

There are also, however, a large number of idiosyncratic theories that cannot cleanly be assigned to any of these schools of thought. Since the dawn of Newtonian science with its vision of simple mechanical principles governing the entire universe, some philosophers have been tempted by the idea that consciousness could be explained in purely physical terms.

The first influential writer to propose such an idea explicitly was Julien Offray de La Mettrie , in his book Man a Machine L'homme machine.

His arguments, however, were very abstract. Theories proposed by neuroscientists such as Gerald Edelman [38] and Antonio Damasio , [39] and by philosophers such as Daniel Dennett , [40] seek to explain consciousness in terms of neural events occurring within the brain. Many other neuroscientists, such as Christof Koch , [41] have explored the neural basis of consciousness without attempting to frame all-encompassing global theories. At the same time, computer scientists working in the field of artificial intelligence have pursued the goal of creating digital computer programs that can simulate or embody consciousness.

A few theoretical physicists have argued that classical physics is intrinsically incapable of explaining the holistic aspects of consciousness, but that quantum theory may provide the missing ingredients. Several theorists have therefore proposed quantum mind QM theories of consciousness. Some of these QM theories offer descriptions of phenomenal consciousness, as well as QM interpretations of access consciousness.

None of the quantum mechanical theories has been confirmed by experiment. Recent publications by G. Briegel [44] could falsify proposals such as those of Hameroff, which rely on quantum entanglement in protein. At the present time many scientists and philosophers consider the arguments for an important role of quantum phenomena to be unconvincing. Apart from the general question of the "hard problem" of consciousness , roughly speaking, the question of how mental experience arises from a physical basis, [46] a more specialized question is how to square the subjective notion that we are in control of our decisions at least in some small measure with the customary view of causality that subsequent events are caused by prior events.

The topic of free will is the philosophical and scientific examination of this conundrum. Many philosophers consider experience to be the essence of consciousness, and believe that experience can only fully be known from the inside, subjectively.

But if consciousness is subjective and not visible from the outside, why do the vast majority of people believe that other people are conscious, but rocks and trees are not? The most commonly given answer is that we attribute consciousness to other people because we see that they resemble us in appearance and behavior; we reason that if they look like us and act like us, they must be like us in other ways, including having experiences of the sort that we do. For one thing, it seems to violate the principle of parsimony , by postulating an invisible entity that is not necessary to explain what we observe.

A more straightforward way of saying this is that we attribute experiences to people because of what they can do , including the fact that they can tell us about their experiences. The topic of animal consciousness is beset by a number of difficulties. It poses the problem of other minds in an especially severe form, because non-human animals, lacking the ability to express human language, cannot tell us about their experiences. Descartes, for example, has sometimes been blamed for mistreatment of animals due to the fact that he believed only humans have a non-physical mind.

Philosophers who consider subjective experience the essence of consciousness also generally believe, as a correlate, that the existence and nature of animal consciousness can never rigorously be known. He said that an organism is conscious "if and only if there is something that it is like to be that organism — something it is like for the organism"; and he argued that no matter how much we know about an animal's brain and behavior, we can never really put ourselves into the mind of the animal and experience its world in the way it does itself.

On July 7, , eminent scientists from different branches of neuroscience gathered at the University of Cambridge to celebrate the Francis Crick Memorial Conference, which deals with consciousness in humans and pre-linguistic consciousness in nonhuman animals. After the conference, they signed in the presence of Stephen Hawking , the 'Cambridge Declaration on Consciousness', which summarizes the most important findings of the survey:. It's obvious to everyone in this room that animals have consciousness, but it is not obvious to the rest of the world.

It is not obvious to the rest of the Western world or the Far East. It is not obvious to the society. The idea of an artifact made conscious is an ancient theme of mythology, appearing for example in the Greek myth of Pygmalion , who carved a statue that was magically brought to life, and in medieval Jewish stories of the Golem , a magically animated homunculus built of clay.

Lovelace was essentially dismissive of the idea that a machine such as the Analytical Engine could think in a humanlike way. It is desirable to guard against the possibility of exaggerated ideas that might arise as to the powers of the Analytical Engine. The Analytical Engine has no pretensions whatever to originate anything.

It can do whatever we know how to order it to perform. It can follow analysis; but it has no power of anticipating any analytical relations or truths. Its province is to assist us in making available what we are already acquainted with.

One of the most influential contributions to this question was an essay written in by pioneering computer scientist Alan Turing , titled Computing Machinery and Intelligence. Turing disavowed any interest in terminology, saying that even "Can machines think? In his essay Turing discussed a variety of possible objections, and presented a counterargument to each of them. The Turing test is commonly cited in discussions of artificial intelligence as a proposed criterion for machine consciousness; it has provoked a great deal of philosophical debate.

For example, Daniel Dennett and Douglas Hofstadter argue that anything capable of passing the Turing test is necessarily conscious, [65] while David Chalmers argues that a philosophical zombie could pass the test, yet fail to be conscious. In a lively exchange over what has come to be referred to as "the Chinese room argument", John Searle sought to refute the claim of proponents of what he calls "strong artificial intelligence AI " that a computer program can be conscious, though he does agree with advocates of "weak AI" that computer programs can be formatted to "simulate" conscious states.

His own view is that consciousness has subjective, first-person causal powers by being essentially intentional due simply to the way human brains function biologically; conscious persons can perform computations, but consciousness is not inherently computational the way computer programs are. To make a Turing machine that speaks Chinese, Searle imagines a room with one monolingual English speaker Searle himself, in fact , a book that designates a combination of Chinese symbols to be output paired with Chinese symbol input, and boxes filled with Chinese symbols.

In this case, the English speaker is acting as a computer and the rulebook as a program. Searle argues that with such a machine, he would be able to process the inputs to outputs perfectly without having any understanding of Chinese, nor having any idea what the questions and answers could possibly mean. If the experiment were done in English, since Searle knows English, he would be able to take questions and give answers without any algorithms for English questions, and he would be effectively aware of what was being said and the purposes it might serve.

Searle would pass the Turing test of answering the questions in both languages, but he is only conscious of what he is doing when he speaks English.

Another way of putting the argument is to say that computer programs can pass the Turing test for processing the syntax of a language, but that the syntax cannot lead to semantic meaning in the way strong AI advocates hoped. In the literature concerning artificial intelligence, Searle's essay has been second only to Turing's in the volume of debate it has generated. But other thinkers sympathetic to his basic argument have suggested that the necessary though perhaps still not sufficient extra conditions may include the ability to pass not just the verbal version of the Turing test, but the robotic version, [71] which requires grounding the robot's words in the robot's sensorimotor capacity to categorize and interact with the things in the world that its words are about, Turing-indistinguishably from a real person.

Turing-scale robotics is an empirical branch of research on embodied cognition and situated cognition. In , Victor Argonov has suggested a non-Turing test for machine consciousness based on machine's ability to produce philosophical judgments. However, this test can be used only to detect, but not refute the existence of consciousness. A positive result proves that machine is conscious but a negative result proves nothing. For many decades, consciousness as a research topic was avoided by the majority of mainstream scientists, because of a general feeling that a phenomenon defined in subjective terms could not properly be studied using objective experimental methods.

Modern medical and psychological investigations into consciousness are based on psychological experiments including, for example, the investigation of priming effects using subliminal stimuli , and on case studies of alterations in consciousness produced by trauma, illness, or drugs.

Broadly viewed, scientific approaches are based on two core concepts. The first identifies the content of consciousness with the experiences that are reported by human subjects; the second makes use of the concept of consciousness that has been developed by neurologists and other medical professionals who deal with patients whose behavior is impaired. In either case, the ultimate goals are to develop techniques for assessing consciousness objectively in humans as well as other animals, and to understand the neural and psychological mechanisms that underlie it.

Experimental research on consciousness presents special difficulties, due to the lack of a universally accepted operational definition. In the majority of experiments that are specifically about consciousness, the subjects are human, and the criterion used is verbal report: In several paradigms, such as the technique of response priming , the behavior of subjects is clearly influenced by stimuli for which they report no awareness, and suitable experimental manipulations can lead to increasing priming effects despite decreasing prime identification double dissociation.

Verbal report is widely considered to be the most reliable indicator of consciousness, but it raises a number of issues. As a third issue, philosophers who dispute the validity of the Turing test may feel that it is possible, at least in principle, for verbal report to be dissociated from consciousness entirely: Although verbal report is in practice the "gold standard" for ascribing consciousness, it is not the only possible criterion.

The last three of these can be used as indicators of consciousness when verbal behavior is absent. Their reliability as indicators of consciousness is disputed, however, due to numerous studies showing that alert human subjects can be induced to behave purposefully in a variety of ways in spite of reporting a complete lack of awareness. Another approach applies specifically to the study of self-awareness , that is, the ability to distinguish oneself from others.

In the s Gordon Gallup developed an operational test for self-awareness, known as the mirror test. The test examines whether animals are able to differentiate between seeing themselves in a mirror versus seeing other animals. The classic example involves placing a spot of coloring on the skin or fur near the individual's forehead and seeing if they attempt to remove it or at least touch the spot, thus indicating that they recognize that the individual they are seeing in the mirror is themselves.

A major part of the scientific literature on consciousness consists of studies that examine the relationship between the experiences reported by subjects and the activity that simultaneously takes place in their brains—that is, studies of the neural correlates of consciousness. The hope is to find that activity in a particular part of the brain, or a particular pattern of global brain activity, which will be strongly predictive of conscious awareness.

Several brain imaging techniques, such as EEG and fMRI , have been used for physical measures of brain activity in these studies. Another idea that has drawn attention for several decades is that consciousness is associated with high-frequency gamma band oscillations in brain activity. This idea arose from proposals in the s, by Christof von der Malsburg and Wolf Singer, that gamma oscillations could solve the so-called binding problem , by linking information represented in different parts of the brain into a unified experience.

A number of studies have shown that activity in primary sensory areas of the brain is not sufficient to produce consciousness: There is substantial evidence that a "top-down" flow of neural activity i.

Modulation of neural responses may correlate with phenomenal experiences. In contrast to the raw electrical responses that do not correlate with consciousness, the modulation of these responses by other stimuli correlates surprisingly well with an important aspect of consciousness: In , Graziano and Kastner [97] proposed the "attention schema" theory of awareness.

In that theory, specific cortical areas, notably in the superior temporal sulcus and the temporo-parietal junction, are used to build the construct of awareness and attribute it to other people. The same cortical machinery is also used to attribute awareness to oneself. Damage to these cortical regions can lead to deficits in consciousness such as hemispatial neglect.

In the attention schema theory, the value of explaining the feature of awareness and attributing it to a person is to gain a useful predictive model of that person's attentional processing. Attention is a style of information processing in which a brain focuses its resources on a limited set of interrelated signals. Awareness, in this theory, is a useful, simplified schema that represents attentional states.

To be aware of X is explained by constructing a model of one's attentional focus on X. In the , the perturbational complexity index PCI was proposed, a measure of the algorithmic complexity of the electrophysiological response of the cortex to transcranial magnetic stimulation. This measure was shown to be higher in individuals that are awake, in REM sleep or in a locked-in state than in those who are in deep sleep or in a vegetative state, [98] making it potentially useful as a quantitative assessment of consciousness states.

Assuming that not only humans but even some non-mammalian species are conscious, a number of evolutionary approaches to the problem of neural correlates of consciousness open up. For example, assuming that birds are conscious — a common assumption among neuroscientists and ethologists due to the extensive cognitive repertoire of birds — there are comparative neuroanatomical ways to validate some of the principal, currently competing, mammalian consciousness—brain theories.

The rationale for such a comparative study is that the avian brain deviates structurally from the mammalian brain. So how similar are they?

What homologues can be identified? The general conclusion from the study by Butler, et al. The structures assumed to be critical for consciousness in mammalian brains have homologous counterparts in avian brains.

Thus the main portions of the theories of Crick and Koch, [] Edelman and Tononi, [] and Cotterill [] seem to be compatible with the assumption that birds are conscious. Edelman also differentiates between what he calls primary consciousness which is a trait shared by humans and non-human animals and higher-order consciousness as it appears in humans alone along with human language capacity.

For instance, the suggestion by Crick and Koch that layer 5 neurons of the mammalian brain have a special role, seems difficult to apply to the avian brain, since the avian homologues have a different morphology. The assumption of an avian consciousness also brings the reptilian brain into focus. The reason is the structural continuity between avian and reptilian brains, meaning that the phylogenetic origin of consciousness may be earlier than suggested by many leading neuroscientists.

Joaquin Fuster of UCLA has advocated the position of the importance of the prefrontal cortex in humans, along with the areas of Wernicke and Broca, as being of particular importance to the development of human language capacities neuro-anatomically necessary for the emergence of higher-order consciousness in humans.

Opinions are divided as to where in biological evolution consciousness emerged and about whether or not consciousness has any survival value. Some argue that consciousness is a byproduct of evolution. It has been argued that consciousness emerged i exclusively with the first humans, ii exclusively with the first mammals, iii independently in mammals and birds, or iv with the first reptiles. Regarding the primary function of conscious processing, a recurring idea in recent theories is that phenomenal states somehow integrate neural activities and information-processing that would otherwise be independent.

Another example has been proposed by Gerald Edelman called dynamic core hypothesis which puts emphasis on reentrant connections that reciprocally link areas of the brain in a massively parallel manner.

These theories of integrative function present solutions to two classic problems associated with consciousness: They show how our conscious experience can discriminate between a virtually unlimited number of different possible scenes and details differentiation because it integrates those details from our sensory systems, while the integrative nature of consciousness in this view easily explains how our experience can seem unified as one whole despite all of these individual parts.

However, it remains unspecified which kinds of information are integrated in a conscious manner and which kinds can be integrated without consciousness. Nor is it explained what specific causal role conscious integration plays, nor why the same functionality cannot be achieved without consciousness. Obviously not all kinds of information are capable of being disseminated consciously e. For a review of the differences between conscious and unconscious integrations, see the article of E.

As noted earlier, even among writers who consider consciousness to be a well-defined thing, there is widespread dispute about which animals other than humans can be said to possess it. Thus, any examination of the evolution of consciousness is faced with great difficulties. Nevertheless, some writers have argued that consciousness can be viewed from the standpoint of evolutionary biology as an adaptation in the sense of a trait that increases fitness.

Other philosophers, however, have suggested that consciousness would not be necessary for any functional advantage in evolutionary processes. There are some brain states in which consciousness seems to be absent, including dreamless sleep, coma, and death. There are also a variety of circumstances that can change the relationship between the mind and the world in less drastic ways, producing what are known as altered states of consciousness. Some altered states occur naturally; others can be produced by drugs or brain damage.

The two most widely accepted altered states are sleep and dreaming. Although dream sleep and non-dream sleep appear very similar to an outside observer, each is associated with a distinct pattern of brain activity, metabolic activity, and eye movement; each is also associated with a distinct pattern of experience and cognition.

During ordinary non-dream sleep, people who are awakened report only vague and sketchy thoughts, and their experiences do not cohere into a continuous narrative. During dream sleep, in contrast, people who are awakened report rich and detailed experiences in which events form a continuous progression, which may however be interrupted by bizarre or fantastic intrusions.

Both dream and non-dream states are associated with severe disruption of memory: Research conducted on the effects of partial epileptic seizures on consciousness found that patients who suffer from partial epileptic seizures experience altered states of consciousness.

Studies found that when measuring the qualitative features during partial epileptic seizures, patients exhibited an increase in arousal and became absorbed in the experience of the seizure, followed by difficulty in focusing and shifting attention. A variety of psychoactive drugs , including alcohol , have notable effects on consciousness. The brain mechanisms underlying these effects are not as well understood as those induced by use of alcohol , [] but there is substantial evidence that alterations in the brain system that uses the chemical neurotransmitter serotonin play an essential role.

There has been some research into physiological changes in yogis and people who practise various techniques of meditation. Some research with brain waves during meditation has reported differences between those corresponding to ordinary relaxation and those corresponding to meditation.

It has been disputed, however, whether there is enough evidence to count these as physiologically distinct states of consciousness. The most extensive study of the characteristics of altered states of consciousness was made by psychologist Charles Tart in the s and s. Tart analyzed a state of consciousness as made up of a number of component processes, including exteroception sensing the external world ; interoception sensing the body ; input-processing seeing meaning ; emotions; memory; time sense; sense of identity; evaluation and cognitive processing; motor output; and interaction with the environment.

The components that Tart identified have not, however, been validated by empirical studies. Research in this area has not yet reached firm conclusions, but a recent questionnaire-based study identified eleven significant factors contributing to drug-induced states of consciousness: Phenomenology is a method of inquiry that attempts to examine the structure of consciousness in its own right, putting aside problems regarding the relationship of consciousness to the physical world.

This approach was first proposed by the philosopher Edmund Husserl , and later elaborated by other philosophers and scientists. In philosophy , phenomenology has largely been devoted to fundamental metaphysical questions, such as the nature of intentionality "aboutness".

In psychology , phenomenology largely has meant attempting to investigate consciousness using the method of introspection , which means looking into one's own mind and reporting what one observes. This method fell into disrepute in the early twentieth century because of grave doubts about its reliability, but has been rehabilitated to some degree, especially when used in combination with techniques for examining brain activity.

Introspectively, the world of conscious experience seems to have considerable structure. Immanuel Kant asserted that the world as we perceive it is organized according to a set of fundamental "intuitions", which include 'object' we perceive the world as a set of distinct things ; 'shape'; 'quality' color, warmth, etc.

Understanding the physical basis of qualities, such as redness or pain, has been particularly challenging. David Chalmers has called this the hard problem of consciousness. For example, research on ideasthesia shows that qualia are organised into a semantic-like network. Nevertheless, it is clear that the relationship between a physical entity such as light and a perceptual quality such as color is extraordinarily complex and indirect, as demonstrated by a variety of optical illusions such as neon color spreading.

In neuroscience, a great deal of effort has gone into investigating how the perceived world of conscious awareness is constructed inside the brain. The process is generally thought to involve two primary mechanisms: Signals arising from sensory organs are transmitted to the brain and then processed in a series of stages, which extract multiple types of information from the raw input.

In the visual system, for example, sensory signals from the eyes are transmitted to the thalamus and then to the primary visual cortex ; inside the cerebral cortex they are sent to areas that extract features such as three-dimensional structure, shape, color, and motion.

First, it allows sensory information to be evaluated in the context of previous experience. Second, and even more importantly, working memory allows information to be integrated over time so that it can generate a stable representation of the world— Gerald Edelman expressed this point vividly by titling one of his books about consciousness The Remembered Present. Bayesian models of the brain are probabilistic inference models, in which the brain takes advantage of prior knowledge to interpret uncertain sensory inputs in order to formulate a conscious percept; Bayesian models have successfully predicted many perceptual phenomena in vision and the nonvisual senses.

Despite the large amount of information available, many important aspects of perception remain mysterious. A great deal is known about low-level signal processing in sensory systems. However, how sensory systems, action systems, and language systems interact are poorly understood. At a deeper level, there are still basic conceptual issues that remain unresolved. Gibson and roboticist Rodney Brooks , who both argued in favor of "intelligence without representation".

The medical approach to consciousness is practically oriented. It derives from a need to treat people whose brain function has been impaired as a result of disease, brain damage, toxins, or drugs. In medicine, conceptual distinctions are considered useful to the degree that they can help to guide treatments.

Whereas the philosophical approach to consciousness focuses on its fundamental nature and its contents, the medical approach focuses on the amount of consciousness a person has: Consciousness is of concern to patients and physicians, especially neurologists and anesthesiologists.

Patients may suffer from disorders of consciousness, or may need to be anesthetized for a surgical procedure. Physicians may perform consciousness-related interventions such as instructing the patient to sleep, administering general anesthesia , or inducing medical coma. In medicine, consciousness is examined using a set of procedures known as neuropsychological assessment. The simple procedure begins by asking whether the patient is able to move and react to physical stimuli.

If so, the next question is whether the patient can respond in a meaningful way to questions and commands. If so, the patient is asked for name, current location, and current day and time.

The more complex procedure is known as a neurological examination , and is usually carried out by a neurologist in a hospital setting. A formal neurological examination runs through a precisely delineated series of tests, beginning with tests for basic sensorimotor reflexes, and culminating with tests for sophisticated use of language.

The outcome may be summarized using the Glasgow Coma Scale , which yields a number in the range 3—15, with a score of 3 to 8 indicating coma, and 15 indicating full consciousness. The Glasgow Coma Scale has three subscales, measuring the best motor response ranging from "no motor response" to "obeys commands" , the best eye response ranging from "no eye opening" to "eyes opening spontaneously" and the best verbal response ranging from "no verbal response" to "fully oriented".

There is also a simpler pediatric version of the scale, for children too young to be able to use language. In , an experimental procedure was developed to measure degrees of consciousness, the procedure involving stimulating the brain with a magnetic pulse, measuring resulting waves of electrical activity, and developing a consciousness score based on the complexity of the brain activity. Medical conditions that inhibit consciousness are considered disorders of consciousness. One of the most striking disorders of consciousness goes by the name anosognosia , a Greek-derived term meaning 'unawareness of disease'.

This is a condition in which patients are disabled in some way, most commonly as a result of a stroke , but either misunderstand the nature of the problem or deny that there is anything wrong with them.

Patients with hemispatial neglect are often paralyzed on the right side of the body, but sometimes deny being unable to move. When questioned about the obvious problem, the patient may avoid giving a direct answer, or may give an explanation that doesn't make sense. Patients with hemispatial neglect may also fail to recognize paralyzed parts of their bodies: An even more striking type of anosognosia is Anton—Babinski syndrome , a rarely occurring condition in which patients become blind but claim to be able to see normally, and persist in this claim in spite of all evidence to the contrary.

William James is usually credited with popularizing the idea that human consciousness flows like a stream, in his Principles of Psychology of According to James, the "stream of thought" is governed by five characteristics: Buddhist teachings describe that consciousness manifests moment to moment as sense impressions and mental phenomena that are continuously changing.

The mental events generated as a result of these triggers are: The moment-by-moment manifestation of the mind-stream is said to happen in every person all the time. It even happens in a scientist who analyses various phenomena in the world, or analyses the material body including the organ brain.

known to oneself; felt: conscious guilt. aware of what one is doing: a conscious liar. aware of oneself; self-conscious. deliberate; intentional: a conscious insult; a conscious effort. acutely aware of or concerned about: money-conscious; a diet-conscious society. Obsolete. inwardly sensible of wrongdoing. Kids Definition of conscious 1: aware of facts, feelings, or some particular condition or situation He was painfully conscious of his many missing buttons. Consciousness may have a determinative role in quantum mechanics. Since consciousness is the primary aspect of an observer, and observation is sometimes viewed as a primary reason for apparent wave function collapse, consciousness may account for aspects of the measurement problem exemplified by the Schrödinger's cat paradox.