Integrating the World-Consciousness Into the Yoga of Knowledge

The remote, abstracted and completely detached mode of consciousness achieved in the traditional Yoga of knowledge is not the goal to be reached in the practice of the integral Yoga, however. When the seeker of the integral Yoga reaches the status of the unmoving, uninvolved, silent and detached All-Consciousness, there must come a recognition that the world manifestation too is a part of the Reality, what Sri Aurobindo elsewhere calls “reality omnipresent”. “The integral Yoga of knowledge demands instead a divine return upon world-existence and its first step must be to realise the Self as the All, sarvam brahma.”

There are various steps and stages involved in this integrative process: “First, concentrating on the Self-existent, we have to realise all of which the mind and senses are aware as a figure of things existing in this pure Self that we now are to our own consciousness. This vision of the pure Self translates itself to the mind-sense and the mind-perception as an infinite Reality in which all exists merely as name and form, not precisely unreal, not a hallucination or a dream, but still only a creation of the consciousness, perceptual and subtle sensible rather than substantial. In this poise of the consciousness all seems to be, if not a dream, yet very much like a representation or puppet-show taking place in the calm, motionless, peaceful, indifferent Self.” The seeker moves as another moving part in this movement of Nature while remaining absorbed in the unmoving stillness and peace of the consciousness. Action seems to take place mechanically as the Gunas of Nature operate the machinery of the world, including the actions of the individual now absorbed in the unmoving Infinite.

“For this Self is the immobile and does not originate or take part in the action which it allows. This Self is the All in the sense only of being the infinite One who is immutably and contains all names and forms.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Two: The Yoga of Integral Knowledge, Chapter 14, The Passive and the Active Brahman, pp. 385-386

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