Or how we influence the world we live in
Consciousness is layer zero. It is a point, outside of space and time.
The first level is awareness. Our senses send signals to our brain which we use to interpret the world. These are not thoughts. When you walk into a room and you perceive a table or a chair this is not thinking. It is a process that takes place in the brain independently of thoughts. We perceive an awareness through our five (actually many more) senses
The second layer is thoughts. Thoughts are not consciousness. If they were we could not objectively monitor our thoughts in a detached way. Thoughts are active whereas awareness is passive. Thoughts can move backwards and forwards in time. In fact, thoughts are always about another time or place.
The third layer is action. Action is in the moment. Through our bodies our thoughts and awareness affect the physical world closely adjacent to us. We move our arms or legs, or our mouths to create speech.
The fourth layer is manifestation. As an example, Steve Jobs had the thought of something like an iPhone. The iPhone didn’t yet exist. He used his physical body to help bring about a process that resulted in the production of the iPhone: designs on a computer, meetings with people and so on. It is the manifestation of an idea into reality through actions at the moment that have a strategy that takes place in time. We do this all the time: Cooking a meal, simply getting in the car with the intention of driving to a destination and so on.
The fifth layer is influence. We now move into areas that science, which only deals in three dimensions (plus time in the forward direction only), is unwilling to acknowledge. In order to bring about the iPhone there were a lot of things that happened in the world that Steve Jobs had no direct influence on. What might be called serendipity or synchronicity. For instance, when he dropped out of his college classes he stumbled on a lecture on fonts and typefaces. The outcome of that was hugely influential on the development of the Macintosh computer and subsequently the development of the iPhone. It would appear to be chance or coincidence, but the reality is that when we make an intention we send out waves of influence in time and space that affect the universe around us. Without this our thoughts fail to manifest. With it, things just fall into place.
The sixth layer is spirituality. Influence is another aspect of how we change the world around us. Spirituality is beyond that. It is shifting our awareness to a point where we see that this world is simply a three-dimensional manifestation of a multi-dimensional universe and that what we do in this world is trivial by comparison to it. We are living as Plato’s Shadows in the Cave.
The seventh layer is faith. An understanding that there is a supreme ruler of the universe who is outside of time and space and through faith in him we lead the life that we were created for, not the life that we want to make for ourselves in this world.
Our evolutionary journey on Earth is to progress through these layers. Even an electron has consciousness. Animals have thoughts and can manifest things. Birds build nests for instance. However, although animals are innately spiritual, they can never develop a true understanding of spirituality. An animal can never consciously do a religious act, for instance praying or fasting.
The ideal is to move to the awareness of God and to have a relationship with him such that this world is of interest only in that it serves to bring what was unaware of the higher levels of consciousness into an awareness of them.