The Divine Shakti Carries Out the Sadhana of the Yoga

Given the complexity and inter-relationship of all the parts of our being, and the true nature of our being as part of the universal manifestation and thereby subject to that larger power, the transformation sought by the integral Yoga cannot be accomplished through the force of the individual personality; rather, it must eventually be acknowledged, recognised and accepted that it is the Divine Shakti that carries out the process of the Yoga, and the seeker’s role is to bring forward the psychic being within to guide the inner recognition and response and carry out the opening and the eventually dedication and surrender to that Divine Force.

Sri Aurobindo explains the deeper process: “The Shakti, the power of the Infinite and the Eternal descends within us, works, breaks up our present psychological formations, shatters every wall, widens, liberates, presents us with always newer and greater powers of vision, ideation, perception and newer and greater life-motives, enlarges and new-models increasingly the soul and its instruments, confronts us with every imperfection in order to convict and destroy it, opens to a greater perfection, does in a brief period the work of many lives or ages, so that new births and new vistas open constantly within us.”

During this process, the mind is widened beyond the normal limitations of the human mental power; the vital-force is liberated to accomplish new things, and the body takes up new energy and new capabilities. The sense of a cosmic being pervades and removes the shackles of the ego-personality. The consciousness is no longer bound to the individuality. “It spreads out, feeling the body only as a small part of itself, and begins to contain what before contained it; it achieves the cosmic consciousness and extends itself to be commensurate with the universe. It begins to know inwardly and directly and not merely by external observation and contact the forces at play in the world, feels their movement, distinguishes their functioning and can operate immediately upon them as the scientist operates upon physical forces, accept their action and results in our mind, life, body or reject them or modify, change, reshape, create immense new powers and movements in place of the old small functionings of the nature.”

New modes of understanding arise so that we can see the interplay of forces that act to create the thoughts we think, the emotions we feel, the reactions we undergo in our lives. “We begin to perceive too the key to the enigma of Matter, follow the interplay of Mind and Life and Consciousness upon it, discover more and more its instrumental and resultant function and detect ultimately the last secret of Matter as a form not merely of Energy but of involved and arrested or instably fixed and restricted consciousness and begin to see to the possibility of its liberation and plasticity of response to higher Powers, its possibilities for the conscious and no longer the more than half-inconscient incarnation and self-exprssion of the Spirit.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part One: The Yoga of Divine Works, Chapter 6, The Ascent of the Sacrifice-2, The Works of Love–The Works of Life, pp. 172-173