I am“laterally aware” of myself as the “I” who doubts. I am also aware of myself as the one who performs (or “lives through”) the act of doubting as I perform it.
In self-awareness and the awareness I have ofmyself as I perform an act(ion), the intentional distance between subject and object collapses in self-identity.
This awareness is always there - it is “all around us,” so to speak, we encounter it“on all sides.” Thus, this awareness is sometimes called “lateral consciousness,” which derives from the Latin word lateralis meaning “side.” All of our conscious life and interior acts come to be,develop, and pass away in the presence or light of consciousness.
This consciousness that is always present “peripherally” or “laterally” accompanies all of our acts and responses. It has been calledthe “reflective” or “mirroring” function of consciousness.
But consciousness is not only “reflective” but also “reflexive” (turned back upon itself or turned inward). We are not only aware ofourselves and our actions, but we subjectively experience ourselves and our acts as we perform them.
In “reflexive” consciousness, I experience myself immediately as “living through” or “performing” thisor that conscious act with a givenness that is incommensurable with the givenness of any other object in the world.
According to many modern theorists, we cannot actually experience ourselves in thepresent moment. The coincidence of subject and object (or union) as a lived experience in the “Here and “Now” is impossible.
If consciousness were restricted solely to reflecting or mirroringthe person and the person’s act(ion)s, this awareness would be reduced to nothing more than a content of consciousness, if we did not simultaneously have an experience of ourselves. To mjf...