Participating in and Enjoying the Divine Play

While it may be unacceptable to us to accept that an All-Knowing, All-Powerful Creator God has purposely created a world that manifests suffering, pain, grief and evil, we still acknowledge that from our viewpoint these things seem to exist in the order of existence. How can we understand this? Sri Aurobindo proposes that there are “two missing elements, a conscious assent by the soul to this manifestation and a reason in the All-Wisdom that makes the play significant and intelligible.”

If we look at the progressive steps of the evolution of consciousness between the Inconscient status of Matter, through the manifestation of several stages of life, and the development of the mental level as animals and man evolve, we can see that there is an ordered sequence here of ever-increasing knowledge, awareness and power of action. We can see that humanity is not the end, but an intermediate stage of this progression which goes on into realms of significantly greater knowledge and power. The very fact of these gradations in an evolutionary sequence implies that the Divine Purpose must include an acceptance of the power of Ignorance as we discussed recently, as an exclusive concentration of force that is intentionally “cut off” from the larger All-Knowledge for purpose of an effective “independent” action in the overall manifestation. This way each form and each gradation of this unfolding consciousness can have its free expression and play from its own individual standpoint.

Even the individual beings assent to this process as Sri Aurobindo discusses: “a play of self-concealing and self-finding is one of the most strenuous joys that conscious being can give to itself, a play of extreme attractiveness. There is no greater pleasure for man himself than a victory which is in its very principle a conquest over difficulties, a victory in knowledge, a victory in power, a victory in creation over the impossibilities of creation, a delight in the conquest over an anguished toil and a hard ordeal of suffering. At the end of separation is the intense joy of union, the joy of a meeting with a self from which we were divided.”

“If delight of existence be the secret of creation, this too is one delight of existence.”

In the end, “If the Infinite’s right of various self-manifestation is granted, this too as a possiblitity of its manifestation is intelligible and has its profound significance.”

reference: Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part I, Chapter 4, The Divine and the Undivine, pp. 408-411

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