This I understand all too well. Virtually everyone is hung up on this. What makes you different is that you see the falseness of it, while most others are firmly committed to believing in it with all their might. It’s their true religion.
What you describe as consciousness, I have always described as soul. That thing which makes you uniquely you, that exists before you and persists after you. Consciousness is a better word than soul, maybe. I think there is some a priori knowledge that connects each of us with the sum total of human consciousness since the dawn of time until the end of it, and it is this a priori collective consciousness that man continually and habitually defines as some deity or another.
Yeah, it’s the place where everyone is literally one. Well, it is the place where oneness begins.
It is so… fundamental. I can’t think of a better word. It’s like asking, who were you before you were born? What is it that is within you that has remained the same throughout childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, becoming a parent, and so on.