Awakening is a shift in consciousness in which thinking and awareness separate.
For most people it is not an event but a process they undergo.
Instead of being lost in your thinking, when you are awake you recognize yourself as the awareness behind it. Thinking then ceases to be a self-serving autonomous activity that takes possession of you and runs your life. Awareness takes over from thinking. Instead of being in charge or your life, thinking becomes the servant of awareness.
Awareness is conscious connection with universal intelligence. Another word for it is Presence: consciousness without thought.
from 'The New Earth' by Echart Tolle