Much is made of idea that man is both a spiritual and a physical being. To many people the physical aspect of man is observable and the spiritual is hidden, out of physical sight. Therefore when they speak of spiritual transformation under any of its associated biblical terms- salvation, reconciliation, redemption, etc., it is seen as being distinct and separate from anything we do or experience here on earth.
At the same time some of us have come to see the spiritual aspects of mankind as involving our consciousness. It has been suggested that the story of mankind is one of the development of ever higher consciousness. Of course, this discussion of consciousness and the human mind challenges all comers to try to define and understand what the human mind and consciousness are and the connection between the two, assuming there is a difference.
In a book called Mindsight a medical doctor with help of experts from a variety of fields- neuro science, anthropology, computer science, and psychology- defined the human mind as "a relational and embodied process that regulates the flow of energy and information". Energy is the capacity to act. Information is anything representative of other than itself. It is a pointer to otherliness. There is an interplay between energy and information. Action imparts information which results in additional energy exertion/action and so on. "The mind is a regulatory process: monitoring and modifying. The mind observes information and energy flow and then shapes the characteristics, patterns, and direction of the flow." The mind provides meaning. By embodied, the author explained that the mind involves all of the body's nervous system and not just our brain. The mind is relational in that it is connected to other minds and influenced by those connections, consciously and unconsciously. "Minds are created in relationships including the one we have with ourselves".
In my view, we could reasonably define consciousness as the result of all the mind does in regulating the flow of energy and information. Consciousness becomes a state of the mind. As a subtext we often speak of the sub conscience, a sort of latent awareness which lies just out of reach but real nonetheless. It represents a potential state of mind, perhaps one previously experienced.
At any rate, any admission of the human mind and consciousness into the discussion of the difference between physical and spiritual reality is significant. If the mind and consciousness are a product of a non-physical world, then we automatically establish a strong connection between the spiritual and the physical. I doubt anyone would deny experiencing their mind and consciousness to some degree while still in their physical bodies. That doesn't mean that anyone experiences the mind and consciousness to a full degree now. The point is that if the mind is spiritual then we live in spiritual reality every moment here on earth. Some go so far as to define God as the universal mind or consciousness, again linking consciousness with the realm of the divine spirit.
To draw too marked a line between the physical and spiritual attributes of mankind is perhaps a mistake. It is often said that we humans are spiritual being having a physical experience. If that be true, there is little room to insist that the spiritual reality is so divorced from the physical that while physical beings we cannot observe the effects of the spiritual. To so separate the two realms is to confirm the mind and our states of consciousness as purely biological. That in turn seems to eliminate the voice of God from acting in accordance with Hebrews 8: 10-11 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.
If this voice of God is not a spiritual reality manifested in the physical realm, I don't know what is.