Patricia Hofer

God made us “conscious beings”

Human beings are not just natural beings; we are conscious beings. And each individual human consciousness looks at the world through our own unique set of spiritual “eyes.” … To understand how this works, we must, as CS Lewis wrote, “distinguish sentience from consciousness” (Problem of Pain 134). Sentience is the capacity to feel and respond to physical stimuli. It is clearly a brain function we share with animals. But only the human “Consciousness or Soul,” wrote Lewis, is able to see things in “succession.” Because of it, we can stand “sufficiently outside” one event to observe its leaving and, at the same time, observe another event coming at us that will be replaced or succeeded by a third event. Lewis described this human capacity as “a permanent bed along which the different portions of the stream of sensation roll, and which recognizes itself as the same beneath them all” (Pain 134-135). … This “permanent bed” of self-recognition and separateness is what consciousness gives us. It has inspired humankind not only to religious faith, but also to science and the arts, to exploration and discovery, to creativity and invention. (Drawn from Living Strong, chapter 57, ©️ 2014)

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