The Fulfillment of Mind, Life and Body

For those who appreciate the powers of the human instrument, body, life and mind, we find a continual impulsion to develop these powers, hone and refine them, and challenge the limitations as we grow and mature. Along the way, we discover that this instrument is capable of things we could not have imagined before trying. This is what happens in daily life as people grow, educate themselves and take up various lines of development. We see in the various sports the attempt to extend and expand the capacities of the body, and in those who have taken this to an ultimate degree, we see amazing feats of strength, endurance, speed or coordination. Similarly we see the ability to develop powers of compassion, empathy, aesthetic sense, love, and strength of purpose in the life, and in the mind, powers of reasoning, memory, imagination and creativity, and the development of will power and mastery of conceptual reasoning. Sri Aurobindo observes: “all our normal life is a trying of these possibilities and an opportunity for this preparatory and tentative self-training. But life cannot ind its perfect self-fulfilment till it opens to that greater reality of being of which by this development of a richer power and a more sensitive use and capacity it becomes a well-prepared field of working.”

This is an important part of human development and is a preparation for further perfections that fall outside the normal realm of mind, life and body. Just as the expression of life changes, uplifts and enhances the material substance, and the expression of mind changes, uplifts and enhances the body and the life-energy, so there is further development possible which can enhance, mind, life and body by its action. “Mind is fulfilled by a greater knowledge of which it is only a half-light, life discovers its meaning in a greater power and will of which it is the outward and as yet obscure functioning, body finds its last use as an instrument of a power of being of which it is a physical support and material starting-point.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Four: The Yoga of Self-Perfection, Chapter 2, The Integral Perfection, pp. 591-592