The Dynamic Interplay of Forces of Consciousness in Manifestation

Sri Aurobindo affirms, along with the ancient Upanishadic seers of the Taittiriya Upanishad, that “man has within him not only the physical soul or Purusha with its appropriate nature, but a vital, a mental, a psychic, a supramental, a supreme spiritual being; and either the whole or the greater presence or force of them is concealed in his subliminal or latent and unformulated in his superconscient parts. He has to bring forward their powers in his active consciousness and to awake to them in its knowledge.”

There is a complex web of consciousness between the native planes or worlds of each of these powers of consciousness and their manifestation in the physical world. “For when we say that the soul on earth evolves successively the physical, the vital, the mental, the spiritual being, we do not mean that it creates them and that they had no previous existence. On the contrary, what it does is to manifest these principles of its spiritual entity under the conditions imposed by a world of physical Nature; this manifestation takes the form of a structure of frontal personality which is a translation of the inner self into the terms and possibilities of the physical existence.”

Each of these powers, manifesting in the being put forth by the soul in the world, is in communication with and interacts with its native plane from whence it derives its native strength and characteristic forms of action. The interaction is complex, necessarily, as we layer into the physical self, the successive powers of a vital world, a mental world, a spiritual and psychic world, each at various stages of development, each trying to bring about its own optimised realisation and each having to limit itself both by the limitations of the physical world, as well as by the limitations imposed by the other principles. The logic is “a dynamic logic of these finite workings of the Infinite.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 22, Rebirth and Other Worlds; Karma, the Soul and Immortality

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