Creationist Theory of Human Manifestation Evaluated

Having reviewed the evolutionary viewpoint in the prior posts, it is now Sri Aurobindo’s turn to review the “creationist” viewpoint which essentially holds that the developments in the material world that bring about the existence of the human consciousness are not based on an evolutionary process but are created directly by some superior Being or Intelligence working upon Matter.

“On the side of consciousness the new manifestation, the human, could be accounted for by an upsurge of concealed Consciousness from the involution in universal Nature. But in that case it must have had some material form already existent for its vehicle of emergence, the vehicle being adapted by the force fo the emergence itself to the needs of a new inner creation; or else a rapid divergence from previous physical types or patterns may have brought a new being into existence. But whichever the hypothesis accepted, this means an evolutionary process,–there is only a difference in method and machinery of the divergence or transition.”

Another option is a Descent of consciousness from a higher plane, such as a Mind-plane entering into the terrestrial world. This consciousness would have to be able to directly work on the substance of Matter to be able to fashion the instrument capable of holding and expressing this consciousness on an essentially “instantaneous” basis, which does not comport with what we can see of the process of manifestation of things in the material world. What we see is that new developments tend to base themselves upon already established characteristics and forms that exist in Nature and through a process of extension, these new operations become established. Thus, we would expect to see some prior development of a foundational being ready to hold the increased force of consciousness, or at least capable of being modified to do so.

There may be a combined action with a descent from above acting upon a material form that is developing from below which could develop in a way capable of holding this increased force.

Any way we look at it, we see some kind of evolutionary process at work, “the higher plane only intervening to assist the appearance and enlargement of its own principle in terrestrial Nature.”

Wherever we look in the manifested world, we see detailed, complex and organised process down to the smallest atomic and genetic levels. We see systematic development. There is no evidence that an independent Intelligence or Creator, having gone to so much effort to develop this process, would simply exercise “magic” outside the system so created, in order to do something that does not “fit into” that process.

Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 23, “Man and the Evolution”

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