consciousness is always to be conscious of something. Even if its referent is to an internal bodily state, this has an ontological status independence of the ideas we hold about it: experience is necessarily an experience of something, for the verb cannot be intransitive. Thus the experiencer is someone who encounters something prior to it, relatively autonomous from it and causally efficacious upon it.
Margaret Archer, Being Human, Pg 154
Realism and Human Experience
« The crisis of empirical sociology: against defeatism and rethinking the public role of the qualitative researcher