The Qualities of the Bliss-Soul and the Evolution of Consciousness

While it is impossible for the mental consciousness to truly understand the bliss consciousness, certain characteristics can nevertheless be defined conceptually. The divine standpoint, founded on oneness and unity, responds differently than the mental consciousness based on fragmentation and division. The mental consciousness feels that it must escape from the life of the world to embrace the life of the Spirit. The mental consciousness believes that names and forms are opposed to the unity, and to achieve oneness, the differentiation of names and forms must be erased.

Sri Aurobindo observes: “The bliss-soul is not bound to birth or to non-birth; it is not driven by desireof the Knowledge or harassed by fear of the Ignorance. The supreme bliss-Soul has already the Knowledge and transcends all need of knowledge. Not limited in consciousness by the form and the act, it can play with the manifestation without being imbued with the Ignorance. Already it is taking its part above in the mystery of an eternal manifestation and here, when the time comes, will descend into birth without being the slave of Ignorance, chained to the revolutions of the wheel of Nature. For it knows that the purpose and law of the birth-series is for the soul in the body to rise from plane to plane and substitute always the rule of the higher for the rule of the lower play even down to the material field. The bliss-soul neither disdains to help that ascent from above nor fears to descend down the stairs of God into the material birth and there contribute the power of its own bliss nature to the upward pull of the divine forces.”

The ascent of the mental being is not directly into the bliss-consciousness. “Man, generally, cannot yet ascend to the bliss nature; he has first to secure himself on the higher mental altitudes, to ascend from them to the gnosis, still less can he bring down all the Bliss-Power into this terrestrial Nature; he must first cease to be mental man and become superhuman. All he can do now is to receive something of its power into his soul in greater or less degree, by a diminishing transmission through an inferior consciousness; but even that gives him the sense of an ecstasy and an unsurpassable beatitude.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Two: The Yoga of Integral Knowledge, Chapter 24, Gnosis and Ananda, pp. 487-488