Maya Arises from an Unprepared Experience of Superconscient Reality

Sri Aurobindo looks at the concept of Maya at this point from the viewpoint of the psychological experience that leads us to that conclusion: “…If we plunge by a trance of exclusive concentration into a mystic sleep-state or pass abruptly in waking Mind into a state belonging to the Superconscient, then the mind can be seized in the passage by a sense of the unreality of the cosmic Force and its creations; it passes by a subjective abolition of them into the supreme superconscience. This sense of unreality and this sublimating passage are the spiritual justification for the idea of a world created by Maya; but this consequence is not conclusive, since a larger and more complete conclusion superseding it is possible to spiritual experience.”

Sri Aurobindo contrasts this abrupt experience and the conclusions that the mind draws from it to a different experience that can be developed to systematically bridge the gap between the world of the mind and the superconscient realms. The Upanishadic explanation of the different states of consciousness from waking, to deep sleep with the dream-state joining the two is described as an experiential analysis of the transition from the human to the superconscient realms which is possible not only in dream, but also in trance, or through conscious yogic action to link the awareness and thus experience the omnipresent Reality in all its phases. “If we make the transition, not through dream-trance or sleep-trance, but through a spiritual awakening into these higher states, we become aware in all of them of the one omnipresent Reality; there need be no perception of an illusory Maya, there is only an experience of the passage of Mind to what is beyond it so that our mental structure of the universe ceases to be valid and another reality of it is substituted for the ignorant mental knowledge. In this transition it is possible to be awake to all the states of being together in a harmonised and unified experience and to see the Reality everywhere.”

reference: Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part I, Chapter 6, Reality and the Cosmic Illusion, pp. 452-453


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