The Consciousness Liberated From Body, Mind and Ego

The traditional Yoga of knowledge defines liberation, essentially, as the abandonment of the life of the body and mind through dissolution of the ego-consciousness and removal from involved action in the world. Sri Aurobindo has a different view of the matter, based on the ability of the consciousness to transition from the ego-bound lower nexus of body-life-mind to the free and unrestrained, universal awareness of the gnostic levels of consciousness.

“For in this great transformation we begin to have a consciousness not shut up in a generating box but diffused freely and extending self-existently everywhere; there is or may be a centre, but it is a convenience for individual action, not rigid, not constitutive or separative. The very nature of our conscious activities is henceforth universal; one with those of the universal being, it proceeds from universality to a supple and variable individualisation. It has become the awareness of an infinite being who acts always universally though with emphasis on an individual formation of its energies. But this emphasis is differential rather than separative, and this formation is no longer what we now understand by individuality; there is no longer a petty limited constructed person shut up in the formula of his own mechanism.”

For the ego-bound individual founding his awareness in mind-life-body, it is essentially impossible to conceive such a free, universal and unlimited state of conscious awareness, particularly when it continues to act through the individual instrument. “…but once it is possessed it vindicates itself even to the mental intelligence by its greater calm, freedom, light, power, effectivity of will, verifiable truth of ideation and feeling. For this condition begins already on the higher levels of liberated mind and can therefore be partly sensed and understood by mind-intelligence, only when it leaves behind the mental levels, but it rises to perfect self-possession only in the supramental gnosis.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Two: The Yoga of Integral Knowledge, Chapter 23, The Conditions of Attainment to the Gnosis, pp. 471-472

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