Consciousness and its meaning is considered one of the great enigmas of humankind. We will begin with the rather scientific view, from psychology. Defined through the psychopathology, it is a concept that finds several definitions, however, in general terms, this is a huge set of perceptions, feelings and thoughts that possess humans around the environment that surrounds them, as well as your inner world.
Psychopathology raises awareness has certain dimensions and characteristics. Among them is the verticality, which corresponds to the degree of clarity of awareness, alert, or surveillance. Moreover, horizontality is the dimension that is related to the amplitude of the field of consciousness, also has the feature of reflexivity and interiority, which refers to the ability to distinguish between the internal world of the external world.
To be defined from the psychopathology, it is possible to guess that there are certain disorders associated with consciousness, which, since this discipline are sorted from highest to lowest lucidity. The first of these is the so-called "syndrome obnubilatorio or dullness", and it's a State in which there is a decrease in the clarity of consciousness or alert, generating slowness, and obstacle to all the psychic processes, as well as also certain temporo-spatial disorientation and failure in the short-term memory. Second is the calling "Delirium", which lost contact with the outside world since they alter the sensopercepciones, generating productive phenomena such as hallucinations.
Then is the "Confusional State", own pictures schizophrenic, where the subject is quite disoriented, without being able to understand what happens, also presents productive phenomena.
In fourth place is the "Oneiriforme syndrome" or "Oneiric delirium," which presents productive phenomena such as hallucinations and delusions, to such degree, that the experience is similar to a dream. This alteration may result with the use of certain drugs such as acids. Then, is the "twilight State", which consists of a tubular narrowing of consciousness on a small area of psychic events, and can understand only certain things, all moved from an affection that is exalted. Finally the "Coma", where there is a total absence of response above all kinds of stimuli, even the painful. Are only preserved some vegetative functions as breathing, blood pressure, blood circulation, etc.
Now away from the psychology, consciousness is a central concept for such as Buddhism, Hinduism and other traditions-contemplative disciplines. In general in contemplative terms conscience is the very basis of existence, and is inseparable from the reality. The form presented in the human psyche is not more than an aspect of their expression, while in its essence it is transcendental and would encompass all levels of reality, both material and spiritual, and causal. One of the goals in meditation, in the classical hindu tradition such as vedanta philosophy, indeed achieve "awareness without content", or pure awareness, in such a way to find this universal and transcendental principle in mind. A real mystery.