The Three Forms of Union With the Divine In the Integral Yoga

Historically seekers have focused on achieving union with the Divine. The term “yoga” actually comes from the root meaning “to yoke” and essentially means the achievement of this union. Union with the Divine, however, can take on different forms or aspects depending on the focus. For the seeker of the integral Yoga, an all-embracing union with the Divine is the goal and fruit of the effort. There are three primary aspects or forms of this union that Sri Aurobindo has identified:

“There is a union in spiritual essence, by identity; there is a union by the indwelling of our soul in this highest Being and Consciousness; there is a dynamic union of likeness or oneness of nature between That and our instrumental being here. The first is the liberation from the Ignorance and identification with the Real and Eternal, …, which is the characteristic aim of the Yoga of Knowledge. The second, the dwelling of the soul with or in the Divine, …, is the intense hope of all Yoga of love and beatitude. The third, identity in nature, likeness to the Divine, to be perfect as That is perfect, …, is the high intention of all Yoga of power and perfection or of divine works and service. The combined completeness of the three altogether, founded here on a multiple Unity of the self-manifesting Divine, is the complete result of the integral Yoga, the goal of its triple Path and the fruit of its triple sacrifice.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part One: The Yoga of Divine Works, Chapter 4, The Sacrifice, The Triune Path and the Lord of the Sacrifice, pg. 122