If we view the evolutionary process of Nature we see that when Life evolved out of Matter, it did not take up all of Matter, but just “some” Matter became the basis for the manifestation of Life, with vast sections of the material universe essentially “unchanged” by the emergence of Life in any essential way. Similarly when we see the development of basic mental consciousness in the animal evolving out of the more generalised field of Matter and Life, it is not out of all of Matter, or all Life-Forms that we see this evolutionary step occur; rather, we see Mind begin to find expression in just part of the evolved Life-Forms. When we see the higher mind appear in mankind, it is not out of all animal Life-Forms that we see this occur, but only out of the small section of animal life which we call humanity. In each case, the vast evolution of innumerable forms continues its existence and takes on a more or less “static” or “typal” status and simply provides its own action and law of being on a continous basis as long as it is still supported by and supports the general manifestation taking place.
If we extrapolate to the development of the subsequent stage of spiritual evolution we would have to say that we cannot expect all of mankind to be taken up, evolved and spiritualised; but rather we would either see a new being evolve (as mankind represented a new being in the animal kingdom to carry the more complex, higher mental energies of which mankind is capable) to embody those new energies, or if this is still a stage that is potential in mankind, we would expect only a small segment to actually carry out this new spiritualised step forward to a wider, greater form of consciousness, while the rest of humanity would essentially remain unchanged, carrying out its characteristic actions. If we look at the history of humanity thus far, we do not see any obvious sign that humanity is capable and designated for this next stage of evolution, and it may be simply that the action of humanity prepares the material, vital and mental spheres of evolution to be able to now manifest and stablise the action of a new more highly evolved form embodying the supramental consciousness.
We shall continue our review of the possibilities either way in subsequent posts.
Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 23, “Man and the Evolution”