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[kon-shuh s-nis] /ˈkɒn ʃəs nɪs/
the state of being conscious; awareness of one's own existence, sensations, thoughts, surroundings, etc.
the thoughts and feelings, collectively, of an individual or of an aggregate of people:
the moral consciousness of a nation.
full activity of the mind and senses, as in waking life:
to regain consciousness after fainting.
awareness of something for what it is; internal knowledge:
consciousness of wrongdoing.
concern, interest, or acute awareness:
class consciousness.
the mental activity of which a person is aware as contrasted with unconscious mental processes.
Philosophy. the mind or the mental faculties as characterized by thought, feelings, and volition.
raise one's consciousness, to increase one's awareness and understanding of one's own needs, behavior, attitudes, etc., especially as a member of a particular social or political group.
Origin of consciousness
1625-35; conscious + -ness
Related forms
underconsciousness, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for consciousness
  • Hopefully, his inspiration will live in the consciousness of those who see only possibilities.
  • Eating was a response to being in the cafeteria, and my primary consciousness was busy with socialization and academic learning.
  • The corner-of-your-eye stuff that may somehow work its way into a writer's consciousness.
  • Artificial intelligence will render biological humans obsolete, he says, but will not make human consciousness irrelevant.
  • Finally, computers become so powerful that they can model human consciousness.
  • consciousness isn't in the body when the body is unconscious.
  • Self-aware, self-guiding consciousness did not exist, except as an illusion.
  • Focalization, concentration, of consciousness are of its essence.
  • The cerebral cortex deals with sensory information, thinking, emotion and consciousness.
  • Confusion about the nature of the so-called information age has led to a state of collective false consciousness.
Word Origin and History for consciousness

1630s, "internal knowledge," from conscious + -ness. Meaning "state of being aware" is from 1746.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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consciousness in Medicine

consciousness con·scious·ness (kŏn'shəs-nĭs)

  1. The state or condition of being conscious.

  2. A sense of one's personal or collective identity, especially the complex of attitudes, beliefs, and sensitivities held by or considered characteristic of an individual or a group.

  3. In psychoanalysis, the conscious.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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