The Comprehensive and Integral Knowledge of the Supramental Consciousness

We recognize the fragmented and divided form of knowledge of the mental consciousness, and can recognize that any knowledge acquired by the mind is extremely limited and partial. The character of the supermind implies that it starts from a knowledge by identity with the unified field of awareness, and that this encompasses the transcendent, universal and individual aspects of awareness. The transcendent level means that the supramental awareness is one with the Absolute and is aware beyond the range of the manifested universe. The universal level means that the entire manifestation is within the knowledge and understanding of the supramental consciousness. The individual means that when active in the individual forms or beings, there is a recognition of the oneness and unity and inseparable nature of each existence from each other, as part of one unified whole. The supermind acts as a bridge between the ultimate formless Absolute and the diversity of forms in the manifested world, by holding the unity together in the parts, and by maintaining awareness of that unity at each stage of manifestation.

Sri Aurobindo extrapolates on this comprehensive and integral knowledge of the supermind: “It has in the first place a transcendental vision and sees the universe not only in the universal terms, but in its right relation to the supreme and eternal reality from which it proceeds and of which it is an expression. It knows the spirit and truth and whole sense of the universal expression because it knows all the essentiality and all the infinite reality and all the consequent constant potentiality of that which in part it expresses. It knows rightly the relative because it knows the Absolute and all its absolutes to which the relatives refer back and of which they are the partial or modified or suppressed figures. it is in the second place universal and sees all that is individual in the terms of the universal as well as in its own individual terms and holds all these individual figures in their right and complete relation to the universe. It is in the third place, separately with regard to individual things, total in its view because it knows each in its inmost essence of which all else is the resultant, in its totality which is its complete figure and in its parts and their connections and dependences,–as well as in its connections with and its dependences upon other things and its nexus with the total implications and the explicits of the universe.”

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga, Part Four: The Yoga of Self-Perfection, Chapter 19, The Nature of the Supermind, pg. 758