We have seen that vinnana (consciousness) is said to cease in numerous passages.
But .... on the other hand we have many passages which appear to deny this,
For example, MN 22.36
"And when the devas, together with Indra, the Brahmas, & Pajapati, search for the monk whose mind is thus released, they cannot find that 'The consciousness of the one truly gone (tathagata)  is dependent on this.' Why is that? The one truly gone is untraceable even in the here & now."
Link: http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka ... .than.html
So, is there a contradiction in the teachings?
Perhaps not, but there are only a limited number of solutions.
#1. None of the passages which appear to say that vinnana ceases are
talking about actual vinnana.
#2. There are two kinds of vinnana - unliberated and liberated.
Most of the passages which speak of vinnana ceasing are in the context of
either the Aggregates or Dependent Origination. It is not clear that actual
vinnana is meant in these cases, it could be vinnana as a mental-object of
some kind. I prefer this interpretation.
We know that "mind" can be unliberated or liberated. Is the liberated mind of
a monk the same mind as before except that it is now liberated - or is it a
different mind? Vinnana is a synonym for mind (citta) in many places.
Is the liberated vinnana the same as before, or different?
It is the same in that it belongs to the same "stream" of the same individual.
It is different in that it functions in a different way.