Philosophy, religion and science all seek, in their own ways, for the meaning and purpose of our life on earth. The questions “why”, “what” and “how” are the basis of this existential questioning of our existence. Where do we come from? Is there life before birth? Is there any existence after death, and if so, what is it?
Even if we try to avoid these questions and live a practical life of survival, or hedonistic enjoyment, they continue to impress themselves on thinking humanity. In mamy cases, those who have spent a lifetime denying this search for meaning, come in the end, on their death-beds, to the ultimate question with fear, trepidation, hope and prayer.
Sri Aurobindo provides an answer which addresses the various issues that arise: “In the idea of evolutionary rebirth, if we can once find it to be a truth and recognise its antecedents and consequences, we have a very sufficient clue for an answer to all these connected sides of the one perpetual question. A spiritual evolution of which our universe is the scene and earth its ground and stage, though its plan is still kept back above from our yet limited knowledge,–this way of seeing existence is a luminous key which we can fit into many doors of obscurity.”
Sri Aurobindo places weight on the spiritual significance rather than the mechanical process. “The failure to do that rightly will involve us in much philosophical finessing, drive on this side or the other to exaggerated negations and leave our statement of it, however perfect may be its logic, yet unsatisfying and unconvincing to the total intelligence and the complex soul of humanity.”