Ordinary, consciousness begins when we awaken out of deep sleep. Using brain scans, we can observe different parts of the brain “light up” according to how it is being used in this state. On this level of consciousness, we are aware of the passing of time, our goals and plans, our anxieties and states of energy and excitement, and our ego identity, which we have carefully constructed. All of this does not exist when we are unconscious, in a coma, or in a state of deep sleep.
Then we have Cosmic Consciousness. Cosmic Consciousness accesses a state of awareness beyond time. People who have been in comas and have re-emerged, or people who had clinically died and were revived, report this glorious state of consciousness. Mystics also access this type of awareness. How can that be measured?
This type of consciousness is beyond the human mind, which is what is trying to do the measuring and describing. It requires a common language and vocabulary that delineates non-physical states. Our languages, so far, have equipped us to describe physical reality, relationships, logistics, emotions, and are excellent for any number of practical applications. But they do not equip us to describe the state of Cosmic Consciousness. As the Taoists say, it is “That which cannot be named.”
That which cannot be named, cannot be described or defined, and therein lies the difficulty in defining this form of consciousness.