Is God conscious?

Q. Is God conscious? I have heard that God is not aware of certain things, like time, which has made me wonder if He is aware at all, at least in a way that we would understand. Maybe it’s more accurate to think of God as unconscious. What do you think?

A. Technically speaking, I don’t think we can say that God is conscious. After all, the Course does call consciousness “the level of perception” (T-3.IV.2:1). Perception implies a separation between subject and object, the perceiver and the perceived. Consciousness, therefore, is by definition an island, peering out at the mysterious sea and trying to figure out what’s going on beneath the surface and beyond the horizon.

However, it would be a gross error to assume based on this that God is unconscious. That is going in the precise wrong direction. That would imply that God is less than conscious.

The appropriate term, I believe, is one that played an important role in the original dictation of the Course. That term is “superconscious.” In this early dictation, the lowest part of the mind is the unconscious. Consciousness is in the middle. And the superconscious is the highest level of our mind, the only level that is real in the end. Even though the term refers to our own mind, since our superconscious mind is one with God and knows everything that God knows, as directly as God Himself knows it, than I think we can apply this same term to God.

God, in other words, is superconscious. I think the meaning of this is immediately apparent, but to appreciate it more fully, let’s look at the prefix “super-.” According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, “super-” means:

1a (1): over and above : higher in quantity, quality, or degree than : more than <superhuman>…

1b (1): exceeding or so as to exceed a norm <superheat> (2) : in or to an extreme or excessive degree or intensity <supersubtle>…

 3: having the (specified) ingredient present in a large or unusually large proportion <superphosphate>…

Based on these definitions, to call God “superconscious” is to say that His awareness is over and above consciousness. It is higher in quantity, quality, and degree than consciousness. His awareness exceeds consciousness. It is consciousness to an extreme degree, an excessive intensity. In sum, the specified ingredient of consciousness is present in an unusually large proportion.

In other words, the problem with calling God conscious is that it’s too weak. It doesn’t begin to capture the actual state of affairs. His awareness is no tiny island surrounded by a mysterious sea. It is the sea, and the infinite space surrounding the sea. His awareness is nothing like the sleepy flicker that we call consciousness. It is more like the clarity and intensity of the sun, magnified to an infinite degree. God is not conscious; He is superconscious.

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