Unity of Consciousness Embracing the Manifested Universe

Sri Aurobindo describes the state of consciousness that derives from the individual widening to identify with the world-being, while at the same timing maintaining awareness and experience of the individual form and manifestation: “In this new consciousness the spiritual individual perceives its true self to be one in being with the Transcendence and seated and dwelling within it, and no longer takes its constructed individuality as anything more than a formation for world-experience.”

The experience simultaneously and without conflict is able to embrace the Transcendent, the Universal and the Individual experience, not as separate and distinct things, but as standpoints of one integrated consciousness that holds and embraces them all in unity. “The unity is its being,–yes, but the cosmic differentiation and the multiple individuality are the power of its being which it is constantly displaying and which it is its delight and the nature of its consciousness to display. ”

Oneness with the Transcendent can of course lead to an abandonment of the manifested universe, but this would be a limitation of the power of the Transcendent. This, although possible, is not necessary as the outcome of the spiritual experience of this unity.

Sri Aurobindo explicates this further: “Now we may get rid of this differentiation by plunging into the absorption of an exclusive unity, but to what end? For perfect union? But we do not forfeit that by accepting the differentiation any more than the Divine forfeits his oneness by accepting it. We have the perfect union in His being and can absorb ourselves in it at any time, but we have also this other differentiated unity and can emerge into it and act freely in it at any time without losing oneness: for we have merged the ego and are absolved from the exclusive stresses of our mentality.”

reference: Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part I, Chapter 3, The Eternal and the Individual, pp. 369-370


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