Is This All A Cosmic Illusion?

Having explored the nature of mind in relation to Maya, it is now incumbent on us to take the next step and question whether all of this experience, valid and true within its own framework, is still part of some vast cosmic Illusion imposed on the one unchanging eternal Absolute. Or is it indeed something true and real that we can grow to understand as our limited knowledge increases and widens. Sri Aurobindo first takes up the position of Illusionism to state the case with respect to the truth of our existence that “all this might be valid within the bounds of the cosmic Illusion; it is the system, the pragmatic machinery by which Maya works and maintains herself in the Ignorance: but the truths, possibilities, actualities of the cosmic system are true and actual only within the Illusion, outside that magic circle they have no validity; they are not abiding and eternal realities; all are temporary figures, the works of Knowledge no less than the works of Ignorance.”

The process of our review of this question has been organised by Sri Aurobindo as follows: “All mental cognition depends on three elements, the percipient, the perception and the thing perceived or percept. All or any of these three can be affirmed or denied reality; the question then is which of these, if any, are real and to what extent or in what manner. If all three are rejected as instruments of a cosmic Illusion, the farther and consequent question arises: is there then a reality outside them and, if so, what is the relation between the Reality and the Illusion?”

reference: Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part I, Chapter 6, Reality and the Cosmic Illusion, pp. 439-440

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