The Action of the Gnostic Consciousness as the Third Element in the Development of Spiritual Self-Perfection

The inherent limitations of the physical-vital-mental instrument make it impossible for spiritual self-perfection to proceed beyond certain well-defined limits. The third element, therefore, in the development of spiritual self-perfection is the transition from the mental to the gnostic level of consciousness. Sri Aurobindo describes the process: “This evolution is effected by a breaking beyond the mental limitation, a stride upward into the next higher plane or region of our being hidden from us at present by the shining lid of the mental reflections and a conversion of all that we are into the terms of this greater consciousness.”

“The gnosis once effectively called into action will progressively take up all the terms of intelligence, will, sense-mind, heart, the vital and sensational being and translate them by a luminous and harmonising conversion into a unity of the truth, power and delight of a divine existence. it will lift into that light and force and convert into their own highest sense our whole intellectual, volitional, dynamic, ethical, aesthetic, sensational, vital and physical being. it has the power also of overcoming physical limitations and developing a more perfect and divinely instrumental body. Its light opens up the fields of the super-conscient and darts its rays and pours its luminous flood into the subconscient and enlightens its obscure hints and withheld secrets. it admits us to a greater light of the Infinite than is reflected in the paler luminosity even of the highest mentality. While it perfects the individual soul and nature in the sense of a diviner existence and makes a full harmony of the diversities of our being, it founds all its action upon the Unity from which it proceeds and takes up everything into that Unity. Personality and impersonality, the two eternal aspects of existence, are made one by its action in the spiritual being and Nature body of the Purushottama.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Four: The Yoga of Self-Perfection, Chapter 10, The Elements of Perfection, pg. 667

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