To Know and Express the Highest Truth of Existence

The Self, transcendent, universal and individual in its aspects, encompasses all the knowledge of existence. Sages throughout the world have counseled seekers to “know thyself”. This knowledge of the Self includes all forms, modes, actions and states of existence. Sri Aurobindo observes: “This was what was meant by the Upanishad (Shandilya Upanishad) when it spoke of the Brahman as that which being known all is known.”

“It has to be realised first as the pure principle of Existence, afterwards, says the Upanishad, its essential modes become clear to the soul which realises it.” This is not an intellectual knowledge or mental formation that is meant. This is not philosophy, metaphysics, religion or any of the sciences that dissect and analyze the world. “…we may have the realisation in knowledge and vision, but this is incomplete without realisation in the entire soul-experience and the unity of all our being with that which we realise.”

This is how the yogic science differs from the various intellectual exercises that humanity undertakes in diverse forms. Yogic science stresses realised experience and a state of consciousness that encompasses that which is to be known. “It is the science of Yoga to know and the art of Yoga to be unified with the Highest so that we may live in the Self and act fro that supreme poise, becoming one not only in the conscious essence but in the conscious law of our being with the transcendent Divine whom all things and creatures, whether ignorantly or with partial knowledge and experience, seek to express through the lower law of their members. To know the highest Truth and to be in harmony with it is the condition of right being, to express it in all that we are, experience and do is the condition of right living.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Two: The Yoga of Integral Knowledge, Chapter 11, The Modes of the Self, pg. 358