We call those forms with 'consciousness' as biological or having life. But then what is consciousness..? From microbes like virus, bacteria to animals including human beings, we see certain symptoms of life. Biological beings metabolize, grow, reproduce, die and evolve. We say such beings have consciousness.
What we are seeing are the effects of consciousness. Consciousness causes either electrical signaling or chemical signaling in biological beings that runs growth, metabolism, homeostasis etc etc. This signaling serves as the underlying platform for life. Thus we define consciousness by the effects of signaling.
But can we define consciousness more than this..? No. we can define consciousness only by its effects. Then why we are defining all the effects of signaling to just one cause called consciousness..? Why can't it be multiple causes..? Because we see this evolution of biological being into another across the evolutionary chain. Hence we map all of them to one consciousness.
One way to look at it is 'Consciousness' is the observer which we cannot fathom, which is just a witness to all the evolutions happening. The effects of consciousness such as electrical or chemical signaling are the 'observed', which keep getting evolved into more complex forms creating beings like us. But then these two (consciousness and signaling effects) cannot be separated at all..
We can say we ( as life forms) are a bundle of consciousness, when we view it from the perspective of consciousness. We can say we are the effect of consciousness when we view it from the perspective of the effect.
I see this consciousness, the observer or witness or sAksi as another puruSa. The effects of it like electrical or chemical signaling and all the evolution that arise out of them are the stri or prakRti. prakRti (the signaling effects) keeps evolving but puruSa (consciousness) just keeps witnessing.
In the last post (1), I talked of Shiva as puruSa being similar to Energy. Here we are talking about Shiva as puruSa being similar to consciousness.
There are five puruSas say brhadharanyaka upanishad.
Watch nirvAna shatakam in tamil here (We are just the bliss of consciousness)