Stages in the Evolutionary Progression from Ignorance to Knowledge

Sri Aurobindo describes the stages of this evolutionary development: “The end of this triple process must be a radical change of the action of the Ignorance into an action of Knowledge, of our basis of inconscience into a basis of complete consciousness, — a completeness which exists at present only in what is to us the superconscience.” As a reminder, the three stages were described in the prior post, namely an evolution of ever more complex and subtle forms of Matter, an upward evolutionary ascent of consciousness, and an integration of what has previously been evolved into the new higher level of manifestation.

“Each ascent will bring with it a partial change and modification of the old nature taken up and subjected to a new fundamental principle; the inconscience will be turned into a partial consciousness, an ignorance seeking for more and more knowledge and mastery: but at some point there must be an ascent which substitutes the principle of knowledge, of a fundamental true consciousness, the consciousness of the Spirit, for the inconscience and ignorance.”

The increasing complexity & power of the evolving consciousness, starting from the basis of the Inconscience of Matter, has a long way to go during which the result is imperfect, ignorant, seeking and limited. At some point however, the consciousness widens and ascends sufficiently to be grounded in knowledge rather than ignorance, and from that point forward the ascent goes “from light to greater light” as the Upanishads describe.

“A first involutionary foundation in which originates all that has to evolve, an emergence and action of the involved powers in or upon that foundation in an ascending series, and a culminating emergence of the highest power of all as the agent of a supreme manifestation are the necessary stages of the journey of evolutionary Nature.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 18, The Evolutionary Process — Ascent and Integration

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