In a brief compass, Sri Aurobindo integrates the soul and the universe into a coherent and significant process of Reality: “What we are is a soul of the transcendent Spirit and Self unfolding itself in the cosmos in a constant evolutionary embodiment of which the physical side is only a pedestal of form corresponding in its evolution to the ascending degrees of the spirit, but the spiritual growth is the real sense and motive.”
The past represents the prior stages of this evolution of consciousness in form. The present represents a stage in that evolution which has not yet been completed. The future holds the next stages and opens up the evolutionary development to new and greater manifestations of consciousness.
Our purpose in existence then is to act as a nexus of this increasing development of the spiritual evolution: “Why we are here is to be this means of the spirit’s upward self-unfolding. What we have to do with ourselves and our significances is to grow and open them to greater significances of divine being, divine consciousness, divine power, divine delight and multiplied unity, and what we have to do with our environment is to use it consciously for increasing spiritual purposes and make it more and more a mould for the ideal unfolding of the perfect nature and self-conception of the Divine in the cosmos.”
Sri Aurobindo has encapsulated here the essence of our striving and search for meaning. This provides not only a sense of the Reality of the material universal manifestation, but also a real purpose and meaning to the struggles for growth and aspiration for consciousness that we see within ourselves, and provides a significance to the process of rebirth as an essential mechanism for the successive growth of the soul and its ability to more and more effectively manifest the consciousness of the Spirit in matter, life and mind.