Beyond Time, Forms and Circumstance, the Lord of Creation Transcends, yet Inhabits, All that Exists

Sri Aurobindo translates Shwetashwatara Upanishad, Chapter Six, Verse 6:  “Time and Form and the Tree of Things, none of these is He for He is more than they and it is from Him that this Cosmos beginneth.  We will know this Master of grace and glory, for He cometh to us carrying righteousness in His hand and He driveth Sin from its strong place.  We will know Him for He is in our Self and immortal and the world’s foundation. (Or, He is other than Time and Form and the Tree of the Cosmos and He is greater than they, from Whom this world of phenomena becometh and revolveth.  Know ye the Master of Grace who bringeth virtue and driveth away sin.  He dwelleth in the Spirit of man, the Immortal, in whom the whole world hath its (or, all things have their) home and dwelling-place.)”

The Transcendent exceeds all the limitations of the sequencing of Time, the restrictions of forms and the rolling out of circumstance of forms interacting through Time.  The “Tree of the Cosmos” is the world-creation that has its roots above and its branches and leaves below, the Eternal Ashwattha tree, which represents the inter-connected and developing creation as it moves through Time.  But the Transcendent is not purely above and separate, but resides within the creation, not just as a universal presence, but also as the living Spirit within each being that is manifested.  We can thus experience the Spirit through inward awareness, not of the mind, but an intuitional relation granted to the soul through Grace.

The discussion of “sin” and “virtue” does not relate to temporal definitions of sin and virtue, but relates to those things which draw us into a state of distraction versus those which draw us into a state of Oneness with the Eternal Spirit.  Those things that stir up the vital forces and the emotions, or create mental or physical disturbance, are the creators of “sin” in this sense.  Those things that lend themselves toward a state of harmony, balance, calm poise and inward joy or bliss are the creators of “virtue” in this sense.

Sri Aurobindo, in his immortal epic poem Savitri: A Legend and a Symbol captures the sense of seeking the Divine inwardly:  “O Bliss who ever dwellest deep-hid within, While men seek they outside and never find.”  (pg. 345)

The Transcendent and the Individual Soul are One, and when we are granted, through Grace, the experience of that Oneness, all suffering departs and we are left in a state of peace, and bliss.  Our knowledge of the One Spirit comes, not through mental or logical effort, or any kind of aggressive, vital action, but through a knowledge by identity that arises through the purification of the nature preparing itself for the advent of the divine Grace, as described in the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 11, where Arjuna is granted the vision of the Time-Spirit.

Sri Aurobindo, The Upanishads, Shwetashwatara Upanishad, pp.369-384


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