If we look at a seed, we see a small, generally hard-shelled speck of Matter. One cannot recognize from an external view, that this tiny material speck holds the pattern and growth potential of an enormous redwood tree that can live for many hundreds of years and tower over the material world in its strength and beauty. It cannot be denied that there is a secret, occult intelligence that has built into the seed the complete information needed to create the tree. “This significance is concealed at the outset by the involution of the Spirit, the Divine Reality, in a dense material Inconscience; a veil of Inconscience, a veil of insensibility of Matter hides the universal Consciousness-Force which works within it, so that the Energy, which is the first form the Force of creation assumes in the physical universe, appears to be itself inconscient and yet does the work of a vast occult Intelligence.”
We first see the development of life and vital expression; later, life forms begin to exhibit the working of mind, until we see advanced animal forms which begin to express truly mentalized formations.
As the involved consciousness begins to express itself, it is modified, held back, resisted in its expression by the heaviness and inconscience of Matter. “Thus hampered and burdened, mental man has still to evolve out of himself the fully conscious being, a divine manhood or a spiritual and supramental supermanhood which shall be the next product of the evolution. That transition will mark the passage from the evolution in the Ignorance to a greater evolution in the Knowledge, founded and proceeding in the light of the Superconscient and no longer in the darkness of the Ignorance and Inconscience.”
Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 23, “Man and the Evolution”