Definitions

Wakefulness

Wakefulness

[weyk-fuhl]
Awake refers to the state of being conscious and can be understood in biological terms the behavioral manifestation of the metabolic state of catabolism. It is the daily recurring period in an organism's life during which consciousness, awareness and all behaviors necessary for survival, i.e., success in (Communication, ambulation, nutritional ingestion and procreation), are conducted. Being awake is the opposite of being asleep a behavioral manifestation of the daily recurring metabolic state of anabolism. Animals can eat and run, fly, swim or walk while awake; humans can also talk, listen, write, read, perform arithmetic, and productively think and work in the awake state; however, humans cannot fly while in the awake state.

It is self-evident that the behaviors which take place while an organism is awake are necessary, complex and diverse. As sleep is biologically essential, an excess of time spent awake is considered sleep deprivation, and there are serious physiological and psychological consequences both for individual stretches of wakefulness and serial preference for wakeful activity rather than sleep.

As a state of awareness It is traditional within oriental schools of thought and in esoteric teachings (i.e. antroposophy) to distinguish between four modes of awareness: wakefulness (conferring with dhyana), dream (conferring with dharani, sleep (conferring with pratyahara) and moment of death or absorption of spirit (conferring with samadhi). Each of these modes of awareness (citta) may be exercised (i.e. Yoga) in order to enhance wisdom (prajna) and enlightenment (buddhi). In Yoga these four modes of awareness, mental energies, are united with corresponding life forces (pranas. The mental states of wakefulness, Dhyanas, are corresponding to the Asanas, the commonsensical understanding of Yoga exercises, but specifically refers to the corporeal conduct or seat of the wakefulness.

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