Collective consciousness refers to the shared beliefs and moral attitudes which operate as a unifying force within society. The term was coined by Emile Durkheim in The Division of Labour, which he argued that in “traditional” or “simpler” societies (those based around clan, family or tribal relationships), religion played an important role in uniting members through the creation of a common consciousness. In societies of this type, the contents of an individual’s consciousness are largely shared in common with all other members of their society, creating a mechanical solidarity through mutual likeness. Various forms of what might be termed “collective consciousness” in modern societies have been identified by other sociologists, such as Mary Kelsey, going from solidarity attitudes and memes to extreme behaviors like groupthink or herd behavior. It has also developed as a way of describing how an entire community comes together to share similar values. This can also be termed “hive mind”. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of the Transcendental Meditation program, used the term to describe how the combined coherence in consciousness of a group of people could have an influence on the rest of society.
I think perhaps that you are referring to collective consciousness. The idea of collective consciousness is the idea that there are similar ideas and beliefs that unify a society. This was a theory formatted by Emile Durkheim. This is also sometimes used to refer to group think mentalities.
For a more practical answer and example, check out the article below which discusses how the Internet is a powerful force and has become part of our collective conscious.
To me it means unity and understanding the impact and effect of the choices you make…. the ripple effect. Making choices based on a greater good because of a moral responsibility to everyone and every thing you share Life with. the “greater than us” energy which we are also made of, so we are smaller parts of the same great energy. When you recognize that concept, that is collective consciousness.
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