Integration of Higher Consciousness Into Lower Parts of the Being

The process of evolution follows a similar pattern as the higher gradations of consciousness become active, as was evident in the development of the lower gradations. Sri Aurobindo describes the steps in this process: “there is a heightening and widening of the consciousness, an ascent to a new level and a taking up of the lower levels, an assumption and new integration of the existence by a superior power of Being which imposes its own way of action and its character and force of substance-energy on as much as it can reach of the previously evolved parts of nature.”

A major difference, however, is that the stage of integration of the new consciousness into the framework and action of the previously evolved gradations becomes much more essential to have an effective implementation of the higher spiritual and overmental/supramental grades of consciousness. “In the lower grades of the ascension the new assumption, the integration into a higher principle of consciousness, remains incomplete: the mind cannot wholly mentalise life and matter; there are considerable parts of the life-being and the body which remain in the realm of the submental and the subconscient or inconscient.” Essentially what this means is that the mind is unable to entirely remake the actions and responses of the life-energy and the body into its own image. This is a major limitation that exists up through and including the development of the mental level of consciousness. The mind is limited to having an “influence” rather than effecting a total transformation of the lower nature. Similarly, so long as the spiritual force is working through the mind, it suffers from this same type of limitation. In order to completely integrate the new spiritual consciousness into mind, life and body “it is necessary to bring in a higher dynamic principle which is native to the spiritual consciousness and by which, therefore, it can act in its own law and completer natural light and power and impose them upon the members.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Book 2, Part 2, Chapter 26, “The Ascent Towards Supermind”