consciousness

noun
con·​scious·​ness | \ ˈkän(t)-shəs-nəs \

Definition of consciousness

1a : the quality or state of being aware especially of something within oneself
b : the state or fact of being conscious of an external object, state, or fact
c : awareness especially : concern for some social or political cause The organization aims to raise the political consciousness of teenagers.
2 : the state of being characterized by sensation, emotion, volition, and thought : mind
3 : the totality of conscious states of an individual
4 : the normal state of conscious life regained consciousness
5 : the upper level of mental life of which the person is aware as contrasted with unconscious processes

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

For the most part, the company's bottom line and environmental consciousness go hand-in-hand. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Bikes, bowling balls, and the delicate balancing act that is modern recycling," 31 Dec. 2018 While controversial images of young children being detained in holding facilities have seared the American political consciousness in recent weeks, some Cincinnatians are finding ways to provide support for undocumented immigrants. Justin Reutter, Cincinnati.com, "Local immigrant resources rise as immigration rhetoric heats up," 5 July 2018 If reduced consumption in any way enters into your consciousness, move on now and Merry Christmas. Dan Neil, WSJ, "2018 Porsche Panamera: Fast, Furious and, Yes, a Station Wagon," 19 Dec. 2018 Rihanna has singlehandedly managed to repatriate the skinny brow to our collective consciousness. Jillian Ruffo, Glamour, "Rihanna Reportedly Has a Lookalike Model to Try Out Brow Looks, As You Do When You're Rihanna," 8 Dec. 2018 The video and Brandon's iconic question immediately became part of our pop culture consciousness, even getting a nod in Black Panther when Shuri asks T'Challa that same question while laughing at his sandals. Allie Gemmill, Teen Vogue, "Brandon Moore, Creator of the "What Are Those?" Vine, Has Died at 31," 28 Nov. 2018 This messaging infiltrates our lives and our consciousness through advertising, media, pop culture, and beyond. SELF, "I'm a Personal Trainer and I Never Tell My Clients to Go On a Diet," 24 Sep. 2018 Trends are prints or silhouettes that cycle through our style consciousness, coming back again and again—but a little bit different each time. Marie Claire, "Wear it to Work: Updated Plaid," 15 Sep. 2018 Climate change has only grown in our popular consciousness since the turn of the century, but when the world needed JIRP the most, the program was in noticeable decline. Scott Yorko, Popular Mechanics, "Back to Alaska: How a Legendary Glacier Adventure Almost Died When the World Needed It Most," 12 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'consciousness.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of consciousness

1605, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for consciousness

see conscious entry 1

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Last Updated

9 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for consciousness

The first known use of consciousness was in 1605

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More Definitions for consciousness

consciousness

noun

English Language Learners Definition of consciousness

: the condition of being conscious : the normal state of being awake and able to understand what is happening around you

: a person's mind and thoughts

: knowledge that is shared by a group of people

consciousness

noun
con·​scious·​ness | \ ˈkän-shəs-nəs \

Kids Definition of consciousness

1 : the condition of being mentally awake and active Following surgery, she slowly regained consciousness.
2 : the part of the mind involving thought and awareness The memory is preserved in my consciousness.
3 : knowledge of something specified News reports raised consciousness of the problem.

consciousness

noun
con·​scious·​ness | \ ˈkän-chə-snəs \

Medical Definition of consciousness

1 : the totality in psychology of sensations, perceptions, ideas, attitudes, and feelings of which an individual or a group is aware at any given time or within a given time span altered states of consciousness, such as sleep, dreaming and hypnosis— Bob Gaines
2 : waking life (as that to which one returns after sleep, trance, or fever) in which one's normal mental powers are present the ether wore off and the patient regained consciousness
3 : the upper part of mental life of which the person is aware as contrasted with unconscious processes

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