The Process of Differentiation of Forms and Beings in the Creation

Sri Aurobindo translates Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, Chapter One, Section Two, Verse 6:  “He desired, ‘Let me sacrifice more richly with richer sacrifice.’  He laboured and put forth heat of force, and of him thus laboured and heated splendour and strength came forth.  The life-forces are that splendour and strength, therefore when the life-forces go forth, the body sets about to rot, yet in his body even so mind was.”

Once the process of differentiation of forms begins, it multiplies and creates the manifold creation that we experience around us.  This is the “richer sacrifice”.  Sacrifice is the process of aspiration, of a concentration of conscious force.  Sri Aurobindo translates the word tapas here as ‘heat of force’.  The Taittiriya Upanishad equates tapas as the Eternal and the concentration brings about everything that exists.  The forms take on this energy in the form of the Life-Force.  When it is time for a particular form to disintegrate and return to the original state of matter, the life-force departs and the body “rots”.  Existence is a constant process of offering, of sacrifice, as each form takes shape, plays its role, and then is given up to another form in the process of birth, life, and death.

Sri M. P. Pandit notes:  “He desired to sacrifice, to lend Himself for further becoming.  To the exclusion of His other self-formulations, He concentrated and brooded upon his developing body to render it fit for the great Sacrifice.  And with the maturity of Time He sacrificed His own Body to Himself the Godhead presiding over this creation.  And lesser creatures He offered to the emanations of the Godhead, the gods participating in the Manifestation.”


Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads, Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, pp.327-347 and M P Pandit, Upanishads: Gateways of Knowledge, pp. 185-193

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