Of Consciousness and confusion


The common viewpoint and generally accepted definition of consciousness is “awareness of the self or I”. This concept of “I” makes most of the confusion related to consciousness. Honestly, I haven’t so far been able to understand, accept or deny, or define this phenomenon which even science has just started studying and philosophers have always found difficult to handle.

Is consciousness something which has not been already defined? Is it different from human behavioural traits like perception, value judgement, sociability, emotions, and morality etc.? In short does consciousness at all exist as a separate and unique phenomenon?
If yes, then where does it come from? Is it something innate to our brain or it comes from outside of our physical self? If intrinsically related to our brain as a physically caused phenomenon then consciousness really doesn’t deserve any privileged position vis a vis other behavioural traits.

If it is something external to brain (not necessarily supernatural) where is it from and what is its purpose? We know every organ in our body, including brain, is meant for some function. Can consciousness manifest without being physically caused and then overwhelm and become causal of brain’s functioning? If yes, how and where does it fit in the evolutionary process if at all?

One viewpoint is about epiphenomenalism of consciousness. That is it has no causal powers. If that be the case, why bother about it? Could it better be left aside as non-existent or decidedly given another name, say, perception – which we already know a lot about scientifically?