WHAT CONSCIOUSNESS IS: CONSCIOUSNESS is another mystery, the greatest and most profound of all mysteries. The word Consciousness is unique; it is a coined English word; its equivalent does not appear in other languages. Its all-important value and meaning are not, however, appreciated. This will be seen in the uses that the word is made to serve. To give some common examples of its misuse: It is heard in such expressions as "my consciousness," and "one's consciousness"; and in such as animal consciousness, human consciousness, physical, psychic, cosmic, and other kinds of consciousness. And it is described as normal consciousness, and greater and deeper, and higher and lower, inner and outer, consciousness; and full and partial consciousness. Mention is also heard of the beginnings of consciousness, and of a change of consciousness. One hears people say that they have experienced or caused a growth, or an extension, or an expansion, of consciousness. A very common misuse of the word is in such phrases as: to lose consciousness, to hold to consciousness; to regain, to use, to develop consciousness. And one hears, further, of various states, and planes, and degrees, and conditions of consciousness. Consciousness is too great to be thus qualified, limited, or prescribed. Out of regard for this fact this book makes use of the phrase: to be conscious of, or as, or in. To explain: whatever is conscious is either conscious of certain things, or as what it is, or is conscious in a certain degree of being conscious. Consciousness is the ultimate, the final Reality. Consciousness is that by the presence of which all things are conscious. Mystery of all mysteries, it is beyond comprehension. Without it nothing can be conscious; no one could think; no being, no entity, no force, no unit, could perform any function. Yet Consciousness itself performs no function: it does not act in any way; it is a presence, everywhere. And it is because of its presence that all things are conscious in whatever degree they are conscious. Consciousness is not a cause. It cannot be moved or used or in any way affected by anything. Consciousness is not the result of anything, nor does it depend on anything. It does not increase or diminish, expand, extend, contract, or change; or vary in any way. Although there are countless degrees in being conscious, there are no degrees of Consciousness: no planes, no states; no grades, divisions, or variations of any sort; it is the same everywhere, and in all things, from a primordial nature unit to the Supreme Intelligence.