classes ::: movement, noun, Individual, ascent,
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object:the Ascent
class:movement
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class:ascent

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--- OBJECT INSTANCES [0]


--- PRIMARY CLASS


ascent
Individual
movement

--- SEE ALSO


--- SIMILAR TITLES [0]


1.05 - The Ascent of the Sacrifice - The Psychic Being
1.06 - The Ascent of the Sacrifice 2 The Works of Love - The Works of Life
1.21 - The Ascent of Life
1.34 - Fourth Division of the Ninth Circle, the Judecca Traitors to their Lords and Benefactors. Lucifer, Judas Iscariot, Brutus, and Cassius. The Chasm of Lethe. The Ascent.
2.26 - The Ascent towards Supermind
3.03 - The Ascent to Truth
5.01 - On the Mysteries of the Ascent towards God
the Ascent
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--- DICTIONARIES (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)


The ascent is necessarily an effort, a working of Nature, an urge or nisus on her side to raise her lower parts by an evolu- tionary or revolutionary change, conversion or transformation into the divine reality and it may happen by a process and pro- gress or by a rapid miracle. The descent or self-revelalion of the

The ascent can only be achieved by a one-centred all-gather- ing upward aspiration of the soul and mind and life and body ; the descent can only come by a call of the whole being towards

The ascent of the &

The ascent is necessarily an effort, a working of Nature, an urge or nisus on her side to raise her lower parts by an evolu- tionary or revolutionary change, conversion or transformation into the divine reality and it may happen by a process and pro- gress or by a rapid miracle. The descent or self-revelalion of the

The ascent can only be achieved by a one-centred all-gather- ing upward aspiration of the soul and mind and life and body ; the descent can only come by a call of the whole being towards


--- QUOTES [53 / 1000 - 91 / 500] (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)



KEYS (10k)

   48 Sri Aurobindo
   2 The Mother
   1 Z'ev Ben Shimon Halevi
   1 Publilius Syrus
   1 Proclus

NEW FULL DB (2.4M)

   3 William Carlos Williams
   3 Nikos Kazantzakis
   3 Niall Ferguson
   3 Jacob Bronowski
   2 Walter Isaacson
   2 Roger Scruton
   2 Reinhold Messner
   2 Mark Twain
   2 Joseph Campbell
   2 Jon Krakauer
   2 Jacqueline Winspear
   2 Cassandra Clare

1:Do not despise the bottom rungs in the ascent to greatness. ~ Publilius Syrus,
2:Unity is as strong a principle in Nature as division. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.21 - The Ascent of Life,
3:The psychic is the support of the individual evolution ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga - I 1.05 - The Ascent of the Sacrifice - The Psychic Being,
4:Integral opening of the being towards the Divine: the first step of the ascent. ~ The Mother, Words Of The Mother II ,
5:Without being possessed one does not possess oneself utterly. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.21 - The Ascent of Life,
6:Rise with the world in thy bosom,O Word gathered into the heart of the Ineffable. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Future Poetry the Ascent,
7:All in thyself and thyself in all dwelling,Act in the world with thy being beyond it. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Collected Poems the Ascent,
8:But the blind nether forces still have powerAnd the ascent is slow and long is Time. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Collected Plays and Stories - I Act V,
9:Love is in its nature the desire to give oneself to others and to receive others in exchange. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.21 - The Ascent of Life,
10:The ascent of Life is in its nature the ascent of the divine Delight in things. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Essays in Philosophy and Yoga 1.23 - The Double Soul in Man,
11:The ascent to the divine Life is the human journey, the Work of works, the acceptable Sacrifice. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.06 - Man in the Universe,
12:Matter is the last word of the descent, so it is also the first word of the ascent. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 1.26 - The Ascending Series of Substance,
13:Only the Divine will matter, the Divine alone will be the one need of the whole being; ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
14:Into the Silence, into the Silence,Arise, O Spirit immortal,Away from the turning Wheel, breaking the magical Circle. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Future Poetry the Ascent,
15:Drowned in the Absolute, found in the Godhead,Swan of the supreme and spaceless ether wandering winged through the universe,Spirit immortal. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Collected Poems the Ascent,
16:Let us become fire, let us travel through fire. We have a free way to the ascent. The Father will guide us, unfolding the ways of fire; let us not flow with the lowly stream from forgetfulness. ~ Proclus, De Philosophia Chaldaica fr. 2,
17:The blind nether forces still have powerAnd the ascent is slow and long is Time.Yet shall Truth grow and harmony increase:The day shall come when men feel close and one. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Collected Plays and Stories - I Act V,
18:Life is a perpetual choice between truth and falsehood, light and darkness, progress and regression, the ascent towards the heights or a fall into the abyss. It is for each one to choose freely. ~ The Mother, Words Of The Mother II The Path of Yoga,
19:The power of Love supramentalised can take hold of all living relations without hestitation or danger and turn them Godwards delivered from their crude, mixed and petty human settings and sublimated into the happy material of a divine life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
20:Till Nature is ready, the supramental Force has to act indirectly; it puts the intermediary powers of overmind or intuition in front, or it works through a modification of itself to which the already half-transformed being can be wholly or partially respo ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine 2.26 - The Ascent towards Supermind,
21:One must learn to hear and follow the voice of the inmost soul, the direction of the Guru, the command of the Master, the working of the Divine Mother. Whoever clings to the desires and weaknesses of the flesh, the cravings and passions of the vital in it ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - II,
22:[the nature of the psychic being ::: It is the very nature of the soul or the psychic being to turn towards the Divine Truth as the sunflower to the sun; it accepts and clings to all that is divine or progressing towards divinity and draws back from all that is a perversion or a denial of it, from all that is false and undivine. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
23:it is better to wander ::: it is a deeper and more seldom heard call; yet to follow it when heard is wisest : even, it is better to wander at the call of ones soul than to go apparently straight with the reason and the outward moral mentoR But It is only when the life turns towards the Divine that the soul can truly come forward and impose its power on the outer members; for, itself a spark of the Divine, to grow in flame towards the Divine is its true life and its very reason of existence. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
24:The supramental Yoga is at once an ascent towards God and a descent of Godhead into the embodied nature. The ascent can only be achieved by a one-centered all-gathering upward aspiration of the soul and mind and life and body; the descent can only come by a call of the whole being towards the infinite and the eternal Divine. If this call and this aspiration are there, or if by any means they can be born and grow constantly and seize all the nature, then and then only a supramental uplifting and transformation becomes possible. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Essays Divine And Human ,
25:As a rule the only mantra used in this sadhana is that of the Mother or of my name and the Mother. The concentration in the heart and the concentration in the head can both be used - each has its own result. The first opens up the psychic being and brings bhakti, love and union with the Mother, her presence within the heart and the action of her Force in the nature. The other opens the mind to self-realisation, to the consciousness of what is above mind, to the ascent of the consciousness out of the body and the descent of the higher consciousness into the body. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters On Yoga - II ,
26:That status of knowledge is then the aim of this path and indeed of all paths when pursued to their end, to which intellectual discrimination and conception and all concentration and psychological self-knowledge and all seeking by the heart through love and by the senses through beauty and by the will through power and works and by the soul through peace and joy are only keys, avenues, first approaches and beginnings of the ascent which we have to use and to follow till the wide and infinite levels are attained and the divine doors swing open into the infinite Light. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga ,
27:It may yet be said that a logical succession of the states of progress would be very much in this order. First, there is a large turning in which all the natural mental activities proper to the individual nature are taken up or referred to a higher standpoint and dedicated by the soul in us, the psychic being, the priest of the sacrifice, to the divine service; next, there is an attempt at an ascent of the being and a bringing down of the Light and Power proper to some new height of consciousness gained by its upward effort into the whole action of the knowledge. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent Of The Sacrifice - I,
28:the inability to know ::: In sum, it may be safely affirmed that no solution offered can be anything but provisional until a supramental Truth-consciousness is reached by which the appearances of things are put in their place and their essence revealed and that in them which derives straight from the spiritual essence. In the meanwhile our only safety is to find a guiding law of spiritual experience - or else to liberate a light within that can lead us on the way until that greater direct Truth-consciousness is reached above us or born within us. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
29:Everyone is searching for something. Some people pursue security, others pleasure or power. Yet others look for dreams, or they know not what. There are, however, those who know what they seek but cannot find it in the natural world. For these searchers many clues have been laid out by those who have gone before. The traces are everywhere, although only those with eyes to see or ears to hear perceive them. When the significance of these signs is seriously acted upon, Providence opens a door out of the natural into the supernatural to reveal a ladder from the transient to the Eternal. He who dares the ascent enters the Way of Kabbalah. ~ Z'ev Ben Shimon Halevi, The Way Of Kabbalah ,
30:If a division of works has to be made, it is between those that are nearest to the heart of the sacred flame and those that are least touched or illumined by it because they are more at a distance, or between the fuel that burns strongly or brightly and the logs that if too thickly heaped on the altar may impede the ardour of the fire by their damp, heavy and diffused abundance. But otherwise, apart from this division, all activities of knowledge that seek after or express Truth are in themselves rightful materials for a complete offering ; none ought necessarily to be excluded from the wide framework of the divine life. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
31:For it exists already as an all-revealing and all-guiding Truth of things which watches over the world and attracts mortal man, first without the knowledge of his conscious mind, by the general march of Nature, but at last consciously by a progressive awakening and self-enlargement, to his divine ascension. The ascent to the divine Life is the human journey, the Work of works, the acceptable Sacrifice. This alone is man's real business in the world and the justification of his existence, without which he would be only an insect crawling among other ephemeral insects on a speck of surface mud and water which has managed to form itself amid the appalling immensities of the physical universe. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine ,
32:... All the works of mind and intllect must be first heightened and widened, then illumined, lifted into the domain of a higher Intelligence, afterwards translated into workings of a greater non-mental Intuition, these again transformed into the dynamic outpourings of the Overmind radiance, and those transfigured into the full light and sovereignty of the supramental Gnosis. It is this that the evolution of consciousness in the world carries prefigured but latent in its seed and in the straining tense intention of its process; nor can that process, that evolution cease till it has evolved the instruments of a perfect in place of its now imperfect manifestation of the Spirit. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
33:All true Truth of love and of the works of love the psychic being accepts in their place: but its flame mounts always upward and it is eager to push the ascent from lesser to higher degrees of Truth, since it knows that only by the ascent to a highest Truth and the descent of that highest Truth can Love be delivered from the cross and placed upon the throne; for the cross is the sign of the Divine Descent barred and marred by the transversal line of a cosmic deformation which turns it into a stake of suffering and misfortune. Only by the ascent to the original Truth can the deformation be healed and all the works of love, as too all the works of knowledge and of life, be restored to a divine significance and become part of an integral spiritual existence. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
34:the soul alone ensures sincerity ::: It is here that the emergence of the secret psychic being in us as the leader of the sacrifice is of the utmost importance; for this inmost being alone can bring with it the full power of the spirit in the act, the soul in the symbol. It alone can assure, even while the spiritual consciousness is incomplete, the perennial freshness and sincerity and beauty of the symbol and prevent it from becoming a dead form or a corrupted and corrupting magic; it alone can preserve for the act its power with its significance. All the other members of our being, mind, life-force, physical or body consciousness, are too much under the control of the Ignorance to be a sure instrumentation and much less can they be a guide or the source of an unerring impulse. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
35:The whole principle of this Yoga is to give oneself entirely to the Divine alone and to nobody and to nothing else, and to bring down into ourselves by union with the Divine Mother-Power all the transcendent light, force, wideness, peace, purity, truth-consciousness and Ananda of the supramental Divine. In this Yoga, therefore, there can be no place for vital relations or interchanges with others; any such relation or interchange immediately ties down the soul to the lower consciousness and its lower nature, prevents the true and full union with the Divine and hampers both the ascent to the supramental Truth consciousness and the descent of the supramental Ishwari Shakti. Still worse would it be if this interchange took the form of a sexual relation or a sexual enjoyment, even if kept free from any outward act; therefore these things are absolutely forbidden in the sadhana. It goes without saying that any physical act of the kind is not allowed, but also any subtler form is ruled out. It is only after becoming one with the supramental Divine that we can find our true spiritual relations with others in the Divine; in that higher unity this kind of gross lower vital movement can have no place. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga - IV ,
36:If the spirit of divine love can enter, the hardness of the way diminishes, the tension is lightened, there is a sweetness and joy even in the core of difficulty and struggle. The indispensable surrender of all our will and works and activities to the Supreme is indeed only perfect and perfectly effective when it is a surrender of love. All life turned into this cult, all actions done in the love of the Divine and in the love of the world and its creatures seen and felt as the Divine manifested in many disguises become by that very fact part of an integral Yoga. It is the inner offering of the heart's adoration, the soul of it in the symbol, the spirit of it in the act, that is the very life of the sacrifice. If this offering is to be complete and universal, then a turning of all our emotions to the Divine is imperative. This is the intensest way of purification for the human heart, more powerful than any ethical or aesthetic catharsis could ever be by its half-power and superficial pressure. A psychic fire within must be lit into which all is thrown with the Divine Name upon it. In that fire all the emotions are compelled to cast off their grosser elements and those that are undivine perversions are burned away and the others discard their insufficiencies, till a spirit of largest love and a stainless divine delight arises out of the flame and smoke and frankincense. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
37:the psychic being ::: ... it is in the true invisible heart hidden in some luminous cave of the nature: there under some infiltration of the divine Light is our soul, a silent inmost being of which few are even aware; for if all have a soul, few are conscious of their true soul or feel its direct impulse. There dwells the little spark of the Divine which supports this obscure mass of our nature and around it grows the psychic being, the formed soul or the real Man within us. It is as this psychic being in him grows and the movements of the heart reflect its divinations and impulsions that man becomes more and more aware of his soul, ceases to be a superior animal, and, awakening to glimpses of the godhead within him, admits more and more its intimations of a deeper life and consciousness and an impulse towards things divine. It is one of the decisive moments of the integral Yoga when this psychic being liberated, brought out from the veil to the front, can pour the full flood of its divinations, seeings and impulsions on the mind, life and body of man and begin to prepare the upbuilding of divinity in the earthly nature. As in the works of knowledge, so in dealing with the workings of the heart, we are obliged to make a preliminary distinction between two categories of movements, those that are either moved by the true soul or aid towards its liberation and rule in the nature and those that are turned to the satisfaction of the unpurified vital nature. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
38:need for the soul's spiritualization ::: And yet even the leading of the inmost psychic being is not found sufficient until it has succeeded in raising itself out of this mass of inferior Nature to the highest spiritual levels and the divine spark and flame descended here have rejoined themselves to their original fiery Ether. For there is there no longer a spiritual consciousness still imperfect and half lost to itself in the thick sheaths of human mind, life and body, but the full spiritual consciousness in its purity, freedom and intense wideness. There, as it is the eternal Knower that becomes the Knower in us and mover and user of all knowledge, so it is the eternal All-Blissful who is the Adored attracting to himself the eternal divine portion of his being and joy that has gone out into the play of the universe, the infinite Lover pouring himself out in the multiplicity of his own manifested selves in a happy Oneness. All Beauty in the world is there the beauty of the Beloved, and all forms of beauty have to stand under the light of that eternal Beauty and submit themselves to the sublimating and transfiguring power of the unveiled Divine Perfection. All Bliss and Joy are there of the All-Blissful, and all inferior forms of enjoyment, happiness or pleasure are subjected to the shock of the intensity of its floods or currents and either they are broken to pieces as inadequate things under its convicting stress or compelled to transmute themselves into the forms of the Divine Ananda. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
39:scope and aim of the works of sacrifice ::: Into the third and last category of the works of sacrifice can be gathered all that is directly proper to the Yoga of works; for here is its field of effectuation and major province. It covers the entire range of lifes more visible activities; under it fall the multiform energies of the Will-to-Life throwing itself outward to make the most of material existence. It is here that an ascetic or other-worldly spirituality feels an insurmountable denial of the Truth which it seeks after and is compelled to turn away from terrestrial existence, rejecting it as for ever the dark playground of an incurable Ignorance. Yet it is precisely these activities that are claimed for a spiritual conquest and divine transformation by the integral Yoga. Abandoned altogether by the more ascetic disciplines, accepted by others only as a field of temporary ordeal or a momentary, superficial and ambiguous play of the concealed spirit, this existence is fully embraced and welcomed by the integral seeker as a field of fulfilment, a field for divine works, a field of the total self-discovery of the concealed and indwelling Spirit. A discovery of the Divinity in oneself is his first object, but a total discovery too of the Divinity in the world behind the apparent denial offered by its scheme and figures and, last, a total discovery of the dynamism of some transcendent Eternal; for by its descent this world and self-will be empowered to break their disguising envelopes and become divine in revealing form and manifesting process as they now are secretly in their hidden essence. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
40:The link between the spiritual and the lower planes of the mental being is that which is called in the old Vedantic phraseology the vijnana and which we may term the Truth-plane or the ideal mind or supermind where the One and the Many meet and our being is freely open to the revealing light of the divine Truth and the inspiration of the divine Will and Knowledge. If we can break down the veil of the intellectual, emotional, sensational mind which our ordinary existence has built between us and the Divine, we can then take up through the Truth-mind all our mental, vital and physical experience and offer it up to the spiritual -- this was the secret or mystic sense of the old Vedic "sacrifice" -- to be converted into the terms of the infinite truth of Sachchidananda, and we can receive the powers and illuminations of the infinite Existence in forms of a divine knowledge, will and delight to be imposed on our mentality, vitality, physical existence till the lower is transformed into the perfect vessel of the higher. This was the double Vedic movement of the descent and birth of the gods in the human creature and the ascent of the human powers that struggle towards the divine knowledge, power and delight and climb into the godheads, the result of which was the possession of the One, the Infinite, the beatific existence, the union with God, the Immortality. By possession of this ideal plane we break down entirely the opposition of the lower and the higher existence, the false gulf created by the Ignorance between the finite and the Infinite, God and Nature, the One and the Many, open the gates of the Divine, fulfil the individual in the complete harmony of the cosmic consciousness and realise in the cosmic being the epiphany of the transcendent Sachchidananda. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 2.15,
41:A supreme divine Love is a creative Power and, even though it can exist in itself silent and unchangeable, yet rejoices in external form and expression and is not condemned to be a speechless and bodiless godhead. It has even been said that creation itself was an act of love or at least the building up of a field in which Divine Love could devise its symbols and fulfil itself in act of mutuality and self-giving, and, if not the initial nature of creation, this may well be its ultimate object and motive. It does not so appear now because, even if a Divine Love is there in the world upholding all this evolution of creatures, yet the stuff of life and its action is made up of an egoistic formation, a division, a struggle of life and consciousness to exist and survive in an apparently indifferent, inclement or even hostile world of inanimate and inconscient Matter. In the confusion and obscurity of this struggle all are thrown against each other with a will in each to assert its own existence first and foremost and only secondarily to assert itself in others and very partially for others; for even man's altruism remains essentially egoistic and must be so till the soul finds the secret of the divine Oneness. It is to discover that at its supreme source, to bring it from within and to radiate it out up to the extreme confines of life that is turned the effort of the Yoga. All action, all creation must be turned into a form, a symbol of the cult, the adoration, the sacrifice; it must carry something that makes it bear in it the stamp of a dedication, a reception and translation of the Divine Consciousness, a service of the Beloved, a self-giving, a surrender. This has to be done wherever possible in the outward body and form of the act; it must be done always in its inward emotion and an intentsity that shows it to be an outflow from the soul towards the Eternal. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
42:mastering the lower self and leverage for the march towards the Divine ::: In proportion as he can thus master and enlighten his lower self, he is man and no longer an animal. When he can begin to replace desire altogether by a still greater enlightened thought and sight and will in touch with the Infinite, consciously subject to a diviner will than his own, linked to a more universal and transcendent knowledge, he has commenced the ascent towards tile superman; he is on his upward march towards the Divine. It is, then, in the highest mind of thought and light and will or it is in the inner heart of deepest feeling and emotion that we must first centre our consciousness, -- in either of them or, if we are capable, in both together, -- and use that as our leverage to lift the nature wholly towards the Divine. The concentration of an enlightened thought, will and heart turned in unison towards one vast goal of our knowledge, one luminous and infinite source of our action, one imperishable object of our emotion is the starting-point of the Yoga. And the object of our seeking must be the very fount of the Light which is growing in us, the very origin of the Force which we are calling to move our members. Our one objective must be the Divine himself to whom, knowingly or unknowingly, something always aspires in our secret nature. There must be a large, many-sided yet single concentration of the thought on the idea, the perception, the vision, the awakening touch, the soul's realisation of the one Divine. There must be a flaming concentration of the heart on the All and Eternal and, when once we have found him, a deep plunging and immersion in the possession and ecstasy of the All-Beautiful. There must be a strong and immovable concentration of the will on the attainment and fulfilment of all that the Divine is and a free and plastic opening of it to all that he intends to manifest in us. This is the triple way of the Yoga. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 1.02 - Self-Consecration,
43:The guiding law of spiritual experience can only come by an opening of human consciousness to the Divine Consciousness; there must be the power to receive in us the working and command and dynamic presence of the Divine Shakti and surrender ourselves to her control; it is that surrender and that control which bring the guidance. But the surrender is not sure, there is no absolute certitude of the guidance so long as we are besieged by mind formations and life impulses and instigations of ego which may easily betray us into the hands of a false experience. This danger can only be countered by the opening of a now nine-tenths concealed inmost soul or psychic being that is already there but not commonly active within us. That is the inner light we must liberate; for the light of this inmost soul is our one sure illumination so long as we walk still amidst the siege of the Ignorance and the Truth-consciousness has not taken up the entire control of our Godward endeavour. The working of the Divine Force in us under the conditions of the transition and the light of the psychic being turning us always towards a conscious and seeing obedience to that higher impulsion and away from the demands and instigations of the Forces of the Ignorance, these between them create an ever progressive inner law of our action which continues till the spiritual and supramental can be established in our nature. In the transition there may well be a period in which we take up all life and action and offer them to the Divine for purification, change and deliverance of the truth within them, another period in which we draw back and build a spiritual wall around us admitting through its gates only such activities as consent to undergo the law of the spiritual transformation, a third in which a free and all-embracing action, but with new forms fit for the utter truth of the Spirit, can again be made possible. These things, however, will be decided by no mental rule but in the light of the soul within us and by the ordaining force and progressive guidance of the Divine Power that secretly or overtly first impels, then begins clearly to control and order and finally takes up the whole burden of the Yoga. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
44:the three stages of the ascent ::: There are three stages of the ascent, -at the bottom the bodily life enslaved to the pressure of necessity and desire, in the middle the mental, the higher emotional and psychic rule that feels after greater interests, aspirations, experiences, ideas, and at the summits first a deeper psychic and spiritual state and then a supramental eternal consciousness in which all our aspirations and seekings discover their own intimate significance.In the bodily life first desire and need and then the practical good of the individual and the society are the governing consideration, the dominant force. In the mental life ideas and ideals rule, ideas that are half-lights wearing the garb of Truth, ideals formed by the mind as a result of a growing but still imperfect intuition and experience. Whenever the mental life prevails and the bodily diminishes its brute insistence, man the mental being feels pushed by the urge of mental Nature to mould in the sense of the idea or the ideal the life of the individual, and in the end even the vaguer more complex life of the society is forced to undergo this subtle process.In the spiritual life, or when a higher power than Mind has manifested and taken possession of the nature, these limited motive-forces recede, dwindle, tend to disappear. The spiritual or supramental Self, the Divine Being, the supreme and immanent Reality, must be alone the Lord within us and shape freely our final development according to the highest, widest, most integral expression possible of the law of our nature. In the end that nature acts in the perfect Truth and its spontaneous freedom; for it obeys only the luminous power of the Eternal. The individual has nothing further to gain, no desire to fulfil; he has become a portion of the impersonality or the universal personality of the Eternal. No other object than the manifestation and play of the Divine Spirit in life and the maintenance and conduct of the world in its march towards the divine goal can move him to action. Mental ideas, opinions, constructions are his no more; for his mind has fallen into silence, it is only a channel for the Light and Truth of the divine knowledge. Ideals are too narrow for the vastness of his spirit; it is the ocean of the Infinite that flows through him and moves him for ever. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga 1.08 - The Supreme Will,
45:requirements for the psychic ::: At a certain stage in the Yoga when the mind is sufficiently quieted and no longer supports itself at every step on the sufficiency of its mental certitudes, when the vital has been steadied and subdued and is no longer constantly insistent on its own rash will, demand and desire, when the physical has been sufficiently altered not to bury altogether the inner flame under the mass of its outwardness, obscurity or inertia, an inmost being hidden within and felt only in its rare influences is able to come forward and illumine the rest and take up the lead of the sadhana. Its character is a one-pointed orientation towards the Divine or the Highest, one-pointed and yet plastic in action and movement; it does not create a rigidity of direction like the one-pointed intellect or a bigotry of the regnant idea or impulse like the one-pointed vital force; it is at every moment and with a supple sureness that it points the way to the Truth, automatically distinguishes the right step from the false, extricates the divine or Godward movement from the clinging mixture of the undivine. Its action is like a searchlight showing up all that has to be changed in the nature; it has in it a flame of will insistent on perfection, on an alchemic transmutation of all the inner and outer existence. It sees the divine essence everywhere but rejects the mere mask and the disguising figure. It insists on Truth, on will and strength and mastery, on Joy and Love and Beauty, but on a Truth of abiding Knowledge that surpasses the mere practical momentary truth of the Ignorance, on an inward joy and not on mere vital pleasure, -- for it prefers rather a purifying suffering and sorrow to degrading satisfactions, -- on love winged upward and not tied to the stake of egoistic craving or with its feet sunk in the mire, on beauty restored to its priesthood of interpretation of the Eternal, on strength and will and mastery as instruments not of the ego but of the Spirit. Its will is for the divinisation of life, the expression through it of a higher Truth, its dedication to the Divine and the Eternal. But the most intimate character of the psychic is its pressure towards the Divine through a sacred love, joy and oneness. It is the divine Love that it seeks most, it is the love of the Divine that is its spur, its goal, its star of Truth shining over the luminous cave of the nascent or the still obscure cradle of the new-born godhead within us. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
46:It is then by a transformation of life in its very principle, not by an external manipulation of its phenomena, that the integral Yoga proposes to change it from a troubled and ignorant into a luminous and harmonious movement of Nature. There are three conditions which are indispensable for the achievement of this central inner revolution and new formation; none of them is altogether sufficient in itself, but by their united threefold power the uplifting can be done, the conversion made and completely made. For, first, life as it is is a movement of desire and it has built in us as its centre a desire-soul which refers to itself all the motions of life and puts in them its own troubled hue and pain of an ignorant, half-lit, baffled endeavour: for a divine living, desire must be abolished and replaced by a purer and firmer motive-power, the tormented soul of desire dissolved and in its stead there must emerge the calm, strength, happiness of a true vital being now concealed within us. Next, life as it is is driven or led partly by the impulse of the life-force, partly by a mind which is mostly a servant and abettor of the ignorant life-impulse, but in part also its uneasy and not too luminous or competent guide and mentor; for a divine life the mind and the life-impulse must cease to be anything but instruments and the inmost psychic being must take their place as the leader on the path and the indicator of a divine guidance. Last, life as it is is turned towards the satisfaction of the separative ego; ego must disappear and be replaced by the true spiritual person, the central being, and life itself must be turned towards the fulfilment of the Divine in terrestrial existence; it must feel a Divine Force awaking within it and become an obedient instrumentation of its purpose. There is nothing that is not ancient and familiar in the first of these three transforming inner movements; for it has always been one of the principal objects of spiritual discipline. It has been best formulated in the already expressed doctrine of the Gita by which a complete renouncement of desire for the fruits as the motive of action, a complete annulment of desire itself, the complete achievement of a perfect equality are put forward as the normal status of a spiritual being. A perfect spiritual equality is the one true and infallible sign of the cessation of desire, - to be equal-souled to all things, unmoved by joy and sorrow, the pleasant and the unpleasant, success or failure, to look with an equal eye on high and low, friend and enemy, the virtuous and the sinner, to see in all beings the manifold manifestation of the One and in all things the multitudinous play or the slow masked evolution of the embodied Spirit. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
47:root of the falsification and withdrawl of divine love ::: At every moment they are moved to take egoistic advantage of the psychic and spiritual influences and can be detected using the power, joy or light these bring into us for a lower life-motive. Afterwards too, even when the seeker has opened to the Divine Love transcendental, universal or immanent, yet if he tries to pour it into life, he meets the power of obscuration and perversion of these lower Nature-forces. Always they draw away towards pitfalls, pour into that higher intensity their diminishing elements, seek to capture the descending Power for themselves and their interests and degrade it into an aggrandised mental, vital or physical instrumentation for desire and ego. Instead of a Divine Love creator of a new heaven and a new earth of Truth and Light, they would hold it here prisoner as a tremendous sanction and glorifying force of sublimation to gild the mud of the old earth and colour with its rose and sapphire the old turbid unreal skies of sentimentalising vital imagination and mental idealised chimera. If that falsification is permitted, the higher Light and Power and Bliss withdraw, there is a fall back to a lower status; or else the realisation remains tied to an insecure half-way and mixture or is covered and even submerged by an inferior exaltation that is not the true Ananda. It is for this reason that Divine Love which is at the heart of all creation and the most powerful of all redeeming and creative forces has yet been the least frontally present in earthly life, the least successfully redemptive, the least creative. Human nature has been unable to bear it in its purity for the very reason that it is the most powerful, pure, rare and intense of all the divine energies; what little could be seized has been corrupted at once into a vital pietistic ardour, a defenceless religious or ethical sentimentalism, a sensuous or even sensual erotic mysticism of the roseate coloured mind or passionately turbid life-impulse and with these simulations compensated its inability to house the Mystic Flame that could rebuild the world with its tongues of sacrifice. It is only the inmost psychic being unveiled and emerging in its full power that can lead the pilgrim sacrifice unscathed through these ambushes and pitfalls; at each moment it catches, exposes, repels the mind's and the life's falsehoods, seizes hold on the truth of the Divine Love and Ananda and separates it from the excitement of the mind's ardours and the blind enthusiasms of the misleading life-force. But all things that are true at their core in mind and life and the physical being it extricates and takes with it in the journey till they stand on the heights, new in spirit and sublime in figure. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
48:- for every well-made and significant poem, picture, statue or building is an act of creative knowledge, a living discovery of the consciousness, a figure of Truth, a dynamic form of mental and vital self-expression or world-expression, - all that seeks, all that finds, all that voices or figures is a realisation of something of the play of the Infinite and to that extent can be made a means of God-realisation or of divine formation. But the Yogin has to see that it is no longer done as part of an ignorant mental life; it can be accepted by him only if by the feeling, the remembrance, the dedication within it, it is turned into a movement of the spiritual consciousness and becomes a part of its vast grasp of comprehensive illuminating knowledge. For all must be done as a sacrifice, all activities must have the One Divine for their object and the heart of their meaning. The Yogin's aim in the sciences that make for knowledge should be to discover and understand the workings of the Divine Consciousness-Puissance in man and creatures and things and forces, her creative significances, her execution of the mysteries, the symbols in which she arranges the manifestation. The Yogin's aim in the practical sciences, whether mental and physical or occult and psychic, should be to enter into the ways of the Divine and his processes, to know the materials and means for the work given to us so that we may use that knowledge for a conscious and faultless expression of the spirit's mastery, joy and self-fulfilment. The Yogin's aim in the Arts should not be a mere aesthetic, mental or vital gratification, but, seeing the Divine everywhere, worshipping it with a revelation of the meaning of its own works, to express that One Divine in ideal forms, the One Divine in principles and forces, the One Divine in gods and men and creatures and objects. The theory that sees an intimate connection between religious aspiration and the truest and greatest Art is in essence right; but we must substitute for the mixed and doubtful religious motive a spiritual aspiration, vision, interpreting experience. For the wider and more comprehensive the seeing, the more it contains in itself the sense of the hidden Divine in humanity and in all things and rises beyond a superficial religiosity into the spiritual life, the more luminous, flexible, deep and powerful will the Art be that springs from that high motive. The Yogin's distinction from other men is this that he lives in a higher and vaster spiritual consciousness; all his work of knowledge or creation must then spring from there: it must not be made in the mind, - for it is a greater truth and vision than mental man's that he has to express or rather that presses to express itself through him and mould his works, not for his personal satisfaction, but for a divine purpose. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
49:It is thus by an integralisation of our divided being that the Divine Shakti in the Yoga will proceed to its object; for liberation, perfection, mastery are dependent on this integralisation, since the little wave on the surface cannot control its own movement, much less have any true control over the vast life around it. The Shakti, the power of the Infinite and the Eternal descends within us, works, breaks up our present psychological formations, shatters every wall, widens, liberates, presents us with always newer and greater powers of vision, ideation, perception and newer and greater life-motives, enlarges and newmodels increasingly the soul and its instruments, confronts us with every imperfection in order to convict and destroy it, opens to a greater perfection, does in a brief period the work of many lives or ages so that new births and new vistas open constantly within us. Expansive in her action, she frees the consciousness from confinement in the body; it can go out in trance or sleep or even waking and enter into worlds or other regions of this world and act there or carry back its experience. It spreads out, feeling the body only as a small part of itself, and begins to contain what before contained it; it achieves the cosmic consciousness and extends itself to be commensurate with the universe. It begins to know inwardly and directly and not merely by external observation and contact the forces at play in the world, feels their movement, distinguishes their functioning and can operate immediately upon them as the scientist operates upon physical forces, accept their action and results in our mind, life, body or reject them or modify, change, reshape, create immense new powers and movements in place of the old small functionings of the nature. We begin to perceive the working of the forces of universal Mind and to know how our thoughts are created by that working, separate from within the truth and falsehood of our perceptions, enlarge their field, extend and illumine their significance, become master of our own minds and active to shape the movements of Mind in the world around us. We begin to perceive the flow and surge of the universal life-forces, detect the origin and law of our feelings, emotions, sensations, passions, are free to accept, reject, new-create, open to wider, rise to higher planes of Life-Power. We begin to perceive too the key to the enigma of Matter, follow the interplay of Mind and Life and Consciousness upon it, discover more and more its instrumental and resultant function and detect ultimately the last secret of Matter as a form not merely of Energy but of involved and arrested or unstably fixed and restricted consciousness and begin to see too the possibility of its liberation and plasticity of response to higher Powers, its possibilities for the conscious and no longer the more than half-inconscient incarnation and self-expression of the Spirit. All this and more becomes more and more possible as the working of the Divine Shakti increases in us and, against much resistance or labour to respond of our obscure consciousness, through much struggle and movement of progress and regression and renewed progress necessitated by the work of intensive transformation of a half-inconscient into a conscious substance, moves to a greater purity, truth, height, range. All depends on the psychic awakening in us, the completeness of our response to her and our growing surrender. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
50:This greater Force is that of the Illumined Mind, a Mind no longer of higher Thought, but of spiritual light. Here the clarity of the spiritual intelligence, its tranquil daylight, gives place or subordinates itself to an intense lustre, a splendour and illumination of the spirit: a play of lightnings of spiritual truth and power breaks from above into the consciousness and adds to the calm and wide enlightenment and the vast descent of peace which characterise or accompany the action of the larger conceptual-spiritual principle, a fiery ardour of realisation and a rapturous ecstasy of knowledge. A downpour of inwardly visible Light very usually envelops this action; for it must be noted that, contrary to our ordinary conceptions, light is not primarily a material creation and the sense or vision of light accompanying the inner illumination is not merely a subjective visual image or a symbolic phenomenon: light is primarily a spiritual manifestation of the Divine Reality illuminative and creative; material light is a subsequent representation or conversion of it into Matter for the purposes of the material Energy. There is also in this descent the arrival of a greater dynamic, a golden drive, a luminous enthousiasmos of inner force and power which replaces the comparatively slow and deliberate process of the Higher Mind by a swift, sometimes a vehement, almost a violent impetus of rapid transformation. But these two stages of the ascent enjoy their authority and can get their own united completeness only by a reference to a third level; for it is from the higher summits where dwells the intuitional being that they derive the knowledge which they turn into thought or sight and bring down to us for the mind's transmutation. Intuition is a power of consciousness nearer and more intimate to the original knowledge by identity; for it is always something that leaps out direct from a concealed identity. It is when the consciousness of the subject meets with the consciousness in the object, penetrates it and sees, feels or vibrates with the truth of what it contacts, that the intuition leaps out like a spark or lightning-flash from the shock of the meeting; or when the consciousness, even without any such meeting, looks into itself and feels directly and intimately the truth or the truths that are there or so contacts the hidden forces behind appearances, then also there is the outbreak of an intuitive light; or, again, when the consciousness meets the Supreme Reality or the spiritual reality of things and beings and has a contactual union with it, then the spark, the flash or the blaze of intimate truth-perception is lit in its depths. This close perception is more than sight, more than conception: it is the result of a penetrating and revealing touch which carries in it sight and conception as part of itself or as its natural consequence. A concealed or slumbering identity, not yet recovering itself, still remembers or conveys by the intuition its own contents and the intimacy of its self-feeling and self-vision of things, its light of truth, its overwhelming and automatic certitude. ... Intuition is always an edge or ray or outleap of a superior light; it is in us a projecting blade, edge or point of a far-off supermind light entering into and modified by some intermediate truth-mind substance above us and, so modified, again entering into and very much blinded by our ordinary or ignorant mind substance; but on that higher level to which it is native its light is unmixed and therefore entirely and purely veridical, and its rays are not separated but connected or massed together in a play of waves of what might almost be called in the Sanskrit poetic figure a sea or mass of stable lightnings. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine ,
51:::: As an inner equality increases and with it the sense of the true vital being waiting for the greater direction it has to serve, as the psychic call too increases in all the members of our nature, That to which the call is addressed begins to reveal itself, descends to take possession of the life and its energies and fills them with the height, intimacy, vastness of its presence and its purpose. In many, if not most, it manifests something of itself even before the equality and the open psychic urge or guidance are there. A call of the veiled psychic element oppressed by the mass of the outer ignorance and crying for deliverance, a stress of eager meditation and seeking for knowledge, a longing of the heart, a passionate will ignorant yet but sincere may break the lid that shuts off that Higher from this Lower Nature and open the floodgates. A little of the Divine Person may reveal itself or some Light, Power, Bliss, Love out of the Infinite. This may be a momentary revelation, a flash or a brief-lived gleam that soon withdraws and waits for the preparation of the nature; but also it may repeat itself, grow, endure. A long and large and comprehensive working will then have begun, sometimes luminous or intense, sometimes slow and obscure. A Divine Power comes in front at times and leads and compels or instructs and enlightens; at others it withdraws into the background and seems to leave the being to its own resources. All that is ignorant, obscure, perverted or simply imperfect and inferior in the being is raised up, perhaps brought to its acme, dealt with, corrected, exhausted, shown its own disastrous results, compelled to call for its own cessation or transformation or expelled as worthless or incorrigible from the nature. This cannot be a smooth and even process; alternations there are of day and night, illumination and darkness, calm and construction or battle and upheaval, the presence of the growing Divine Consciousness and its absence, heights of hope and abysses of despair, the clasp of the Beloved and the anguish of its absence, the overwhelming invasion, the compelling deceit, the fierce opposition, the disabling mockery of hostile Powers or the help and comfort and communion of the Gods and the Divine Messengers. A great and long revolution and churning of the ocean of Life with strong emergences of its nectar and its poison is enforced till all is ready and the increasing Descent finds a being, a nature prepared and conditioned for its complete rule and its all-encompassing presence. But if the equality and the psychic light and will are already there, then this process, though it cannot be dispensed with, can still be much lightened and facilitated: it will be rid of its worst dangers; an inner calm, happiness, confidence will support the steps through all the difficulties and trials of the transformation and the growing Force profiting by the full assent of the nature will rapidly diminish and eliminate the power of the opposing forces. A sure guidance and protection will be present throughout, sometimes standing in front, sometimes working behind the veil, and the power of the end will be already there even in the beginning and in the long middle stages of the great endeavour. For at all times the seeker will be aware of the Divine Guide and Protector or the working of the supreme Mother-Force; he will know that all is done for the best, the progress assured, the victory inevitable. In either case the process is the same and unavoidable, a taking up of the whole nature, of the whole life, of the internal and of the external, to reveal and handle and transform its forces and their movements under the pressure of a diviner Life from above, until all here has been possessed by greater spiritual powers and made an instrumentation of a spiritual action and a divine purpose. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2,
52:It is natural from the point of view of the Yoga to divide into two categories the activities of the human mind in its pursuit of knowledge. There is the supreme supra-intellectual knowledge which concentrates itself on the discovery of the One and Infinite in its transcendence or tries to penetrate by intuition, contemplation, direct inner contact into the ultimate truths behind the appearances of Nature; there is the lower science which diffuses itself in an outward knowledge of phenomena, the disguises of the One and Infinite as it appears to us in or through the more exterior forms of the world-manifestation around us. These two, an upper and a lower hemisphere, in the form of them constructed or conceived by men within the mind's ignorant limits, have even there separated themselves, as they developed, with some sharpness.... Philosophy, sometimes spiritual or at least intuitive, sometimes abstract and intellectual, sometimes intellectualising spiritual experience or supporting with a logical apparatus the discoveries of the spirit, has claimed always to take the fixation of ultimate Truth as its province. But even when it did not separate itself on rarefied metaphysical heights from the knowledge that belongs to the practical world and the pursuit of ephemeral objects, intellectual Philosophy by its habit of abstraction has seldom been a power for life. It has been sometimes powerful for high speculation, pursuing mental Truth for its own sake without any ulterior utility or object, sometimes for a subtle gymnastic of the mind in a mistily bright cloud-land of words and ideas, but it has walked or acrobatised far from the more tangible realities of existence. Ancient Philosophy in Europe was more dynamic, but only for the few; in India in its more spiritualised forms, it strongly influenced but without transforming the life of the race.... Religion did not attempt, like Philosophy, to live alone on the heights; its aim was rather to take hold of man's parts of life even more than his parts of mind and draw them Godwards; it professed to build a bridge between spiritual Truth and the vital and material human existence; it strove to subordinate and reconcile the lower to the higher, make life serviceable to God, Earth obedient to Heaven. It has to be admitted that too often this necessary effort had the opposite result of making Heaven a sanction for Earth's desires; for, continually, the religious idea has been turned into an excuse for the worship and service of the human ego. Religion, leaving constantly its little shining core of spiritual experience, has lost itself in the obscure mass of its ever extending ambiguous compromises with life: in attempting to satisfy the thinking mind, it more often succeeded in oppressing or fettering it with a mass of theological dogmas; while seeking to net the human heart, it fell itself into pits of pietistic emotionalism and sensationalism; in the act of annexing the vital nature of man to dominate it, it grew itself vitiated and fell a prey to all the fanaticism, homicidal fury, savage or harsh turn for oppression, pullulating falsehood, obstinate attachment to ignorance to which that vital nature is prone; its desire to draw the physical in man towards God betrayed it into chaining itself to ecclesiastic mechanism, hollow ceremony and lifeless ritual. The corruption of the best produced the worst by that strange chemistry of the power of life which generates evil out of good even as it can also generate good out of evil. At the same time in a vain effort at self-defence against this downward gravitation, Religion was driven to cut existence into two by a division of knowledge, works, art, life itself into two opposite categories, the spiritual and the worldly, religious and mundane, sacred and profane; but this defensive distinction itself became conventional and artificial and aggravated rather than healed the disease.... On their side Science and Art and the knowledge of Life, although at first they served or lived in the shadow of Religion, ended by emancipating themselves, became estranged or hostile, or have even recoiled with indifference, contempt or scepticism from what seem to them the cold, barren and distant or unsubstantial and illusory heights of unreality to which metaphysical Philosophy and Religion aspire. For a time the divorce has been as complete as the one-sided intolerance of the human mind could make it and threatened even to end in a complete extinction of all attempt at a higher or a more spiritual knowledge. Yet even in the earthward life a higher knowledge is indeed the one thing that is throughout needful, and without it the lower sciences and pursuits, however fruitful, however rich, free, miraculous in the abundance of their results, become easily a sacrifice offered without due order and to false gods; corrupting, hardening in the end the heart of man, limiting his mind's horizons, they confine in a stony material imprisonment or lead to a final baffling incertitude and disillusionment. A sterile agnosticism awaits us above the brilliant phosphorescence of a half-knowledge that is still the Ignorance. ~ Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis Of Yoga The Ascent of the Sacrifice - 1,
53:The Supermind [Supramental consciousness] is in its very essence a truth-consciousness, a consciousness always free from the Ignorance which is the foundation of our present natural or evolutionary existence and from which nature in us is trying to arrive at self-knowledge and world-knowledge and a right consciousness and the right use of our existence in the universe. The Supermind, because it is a truth-consciousness, has this knowledge inherent in it and this power of true existence; its course is straight and can go direct to its aim, its field is wide and can even be made illimitable. This is because its very nature is knowledge: it has not to acquire knowledge but possesses it in its own right; its steps are not from nescience or ignorance into some imperfect light, but from truth to greater truth, from right perception to deeper perception, from intuition to intuition, from illumination to utter and boundless luminousness, from growing widenesses to the utter vasts and to very infinitude. On its summits it possesses the divine omniscience and omnipotence, but even in an evolutionary movement of its own graded self-manifestation by which it would eventually reveal its own highest heights, it must be in its very nature essentially free from ignorance and error: it starts from truth and light and moves always in truth and light. As its knowledge is always true, so too its will is always true; it does not fumble in its handling of things or stumble in its paces. In the Supermind feeling and emotion do not depart from their truth, make no slips or mistakes, do not swerve from the right and the real, cannot misuse beauty and delight or twist away from a divine rectitude. In the Supermind sense cannot mislead or deviate into the grossnesses which are here its natural imperfections and the cause of reproach, distrust and misuse by our ignorance. Even an incomplete statement made by the Supermind is a truth leading to a further truth, its incomplete action a step towards completeness. All the life and action and leading of the Supermind is guarded in its very nature from the falsehoods and uncertainties that are our lot; it moves in safety towards its perfection. Once the truth-consciousness was established here on its own sure foundation, the evolution of divine life would be a progress in felicity, a march through light to Ananda. Supermind is an eternal reality of the divine Being and the divine Nature. In its own plane it already and always exists and possesses its own essential law of being; it has not to be created or to emerge or evolve into existence out of involution in Matter or out of non-existence, as it might seem to the view of mind which itself seems to its own view to have so emerged from life and Matter or to have evolved out of an involution in life and Matter. The nature of Supermind is always the same, a being of knowledge, proceeding from truth to truth, creating or rather manifesting what has to be manifested by the power of a pre-existent knowledge, not by hazard but by a self-existent destiny in the being itself, a necessity of the thing in itself and therefore inevitable. Its -manifestation of the divine life will also be inevitable; its own life on its own plane is divine and, if Supermind descends upon the earth, it will bring necessarily the divine life with it and establish it here. Supermind is the grade of existence beyond mind, life and Matter and, as mind, life and Matter have manifested on the earth, so too must Supermind in the inevitable course of things manifest in this world of Matter. In fact, a supermind is already here but it is involved, concealed behind this manifest mind, life and Matter and not yet acting overtly or in its own power: if it acts, it is through these inferior powers and modified by their characters and so not yet recognisable. It is only by the approach and arrival of the descending Supermind that it can be liberated upon earth and reveal itself in the action of our material, vital and mental parts so that these lower powers can become portions of a total divinised activity of our whole being: it is that that will bring to us a completely realised divinity or the divine life. It is indeed so that life and mind involved in Matter have realised themselves here; for only what is involved can evolve, otherwise there could be no emergence. The manifestation of a supramental truth-consciousness is therefore the capital reality that will make the divine life possible. It is when all the movements of thought, impulse and action are governed and directed by a self-existent and luminously automatic truth-consciousness and our whole nature comes to be constituted by it and made of its stuff that the life divine will be complete and absolute. Even as it is, in reality though not in the appearance of things, it is a secret self-existent knowledge and truth that is working to manifest itself in the creation here. The Divine is already there immanent within us, ourselves are that in our inmost reality and it is this reality that we have to manifest; it is that which constitutes the urge towards the divine living and makes necessary the creation of the life divine even in this material existence. A manifestation of the Supermind and its truth-consciousness is then inevitable; it must happen in this world sooner or lateR But it has two aspects, a descent from above, an ascent from below, a self-revelation of the Spirit, an evolution in Nature. The ascent is necessarily an effort, a working of Nature, an urge or nisus on her side to raise her lower parts by an evolutionary or revolutionary change, conversion or transformation into the divine reality and it may happen by a process and progress or by a rapid miracle. The descent or self-revelation of the Spirit is an act of the supreme Reality from above which makes the realisation possible and it can appear either as the divine aid which brings about the fulfilment of the progress and process or as the sanction of the miracle. Evolution, as we see it in this world, is a slow and difficult process and, indeed, needs usually ages to reach abiding results; but this is because it is in its nature an emergence from inconscient beginnings, a start from nescience and a working in the ignorance of natural beings by what seems to be an unconscious force. There can be, on the contrary, an evolution in the light and no longer in the darkness, in which the evolving being is a conscious participant and cooperator, and this is precisely what must take place here. Even in the effort and progress from the Ignorance to Knowledge this must be in part if not wholly the endeavour to be made on the heights of the nature, and it must be wholly that in the final movement towards the spiritual change, realisation, transformation. It must be still more so when there is a transition across the dividing line between the Ignorance and the Knowledge and the evolution is from knowledge to greater knowledge, from consciousness to greater consciousness, from being to greater being. There is then no longer any necessity for the slow pace of the ordinary evolution; there can be rapid conversion, quick transformation after transformation, what would seem to our normal present mind a succession of miracles. An evolution on the supramental levels could well be of that nature; it could be equally, if the being so chose, a more leisurely passage of one supramental state or condition of things to something beyond but still supramental, from level to divine level, a building up of divine gradations, a free growth to the supreme Supermind or beyond it to yet undreamed levels of being, consciousness and Ananda. ~ Sri Aurobindo, Essays In Philosophy And Yoga 558,

*** NEWFULLDB 2.4M ***

1:EPILOGUE THE ASCENT BECKONS The ~ Cassandra Clare,
2:The right path is the ascent. ~ Nikos Kazantzakis,
3:Bitter is the ascent of Golgotha... ~ Fyodor Dostoyevsky,
4:The ascent from earth to heaven is not easy. ~ Seneca the Younger,
5:The descent beckons as the ascent beckoned ~ William Carlos Williams,
6:The descent beckons
as the ascent beckoned ~ William Carlos Williams,
7:The descent into the depths always seems to precede the ascent. ~ Carl Jung,
8:the descent was going to be more difficult than the ascent. ~ Jeffrey Archer,
9:Do not despise the bottom rungs in the ascent to greatness. ~ Publilius Syrus,
10:The ascent of money has been essential to the ascent of man. ~ Niall Ferguson,
11:As Hegel well knew, the ascent of reason has never followed a straight line. ~ Paul A Baran,
12:The descent into matter must be complete before the ascent to spirit can commence. ~ Dion Fortune,
13:THE DESCENT SEEMED faster than the ascent: standard in travel as well as in life. ~ Faye Kellerman,
14:Narrow the focus, take the ascent one step at a time, and it's amazing what odds a man can beat. ~ Courtney Schafer,
15:III THE DESCENT BECKONS The descent beckons as the ascent beckoned. —William Carlos Williams, The Descent ~ Cassandra Clare,
16:After the creation of credit by banks, the birth of the bond was the second great revolution in the ascent of money. ~ Niall Ferguson,
17:Today, peace means the ascent from simple coexistence to cooperation and common creativity among countries and nations. ~ Mikhail Gorbachev,
18:This mountain is so formed that it is always wearisome when one begins the ascent, but becomes easier the higher one climbs. ~ Dante Alighieri,
19:Not only during the ascent, but also during the descent my willpower is dulled. The longer I climb the less important the goal ~ Reinhold Messner,
20:We can all fall,” said the abbot. “But perhaps not as hard and not as fast and not as far as someone who spends his life on the ascent. ~ Louise Penny,
21:Whenever you trace the origin of a skill or practices which played a crucial role in the ascent of man, we usually reach the realm of play. ~ Eric Hoffer,
22:No limits are set to the ascent of man, and to each and everyone the highest stands open. Here it is only your personal choice that decides. ~ Martin Buber,
23:Jesus is the descent of God to our lives, just as they are, not the ascent of our lives to God, hoping he might approve when he sees how hard we try. ~ Eugene H Peterson,
24:The delights of this life are not its own, but our fear of the ascent into a higher life; the torments of this life are not its own, but our self-torment because of that fear. ~ Franz Kafka,
25:Partly from the damping influence of this alarm, partly to rest Silver and the sick folk, the whole party sat down as soon as they had gained the brow of the ascent. ~ Robert Louis Stevenson,
26:I believe that the ascent of mountains forms an essential chapter in the complete duty of man, and that it is wrong to leave any district without setting foot on its highest peak. ~ Leslie Stephen,
27:Hand in hand, we climb the processional stair, rising in the celebratory uproar of a capricious court. As we enter the palace, we are blinded by the ascent from sunshine into darkness. ~ Katherine Longshore,
28:In Mencken’s view, “religion belongs to a very early stage of human development, and... its rapid decay in the world since the Reformation is evidence of genuine progress” (“The Ascent of Man”). ~ H L Mencken,
29:ACCLIVITY  (ACCLI'VITY)   n.s.[from acclivus, Lat.] The steepness or slope of a line inclining to the horizon, reckoned upwards; as, the ascent of an hill is the acclivity, the descent is the declivity.Quincy. ~ Samuel Johnson,
30:He went up to his room after dinner in order to be alone with his soul: and at every step his soul seemed to sigh: at every step his soul mounted with his feet, sighing in the ascent, through a region of viscid gloom. ~ James Joyce,
31:How much time, creative energy, and emotion do we expend resisting change because we assume growth must always be painful? Much personal growth is uncomfortable, but it's worse to thwart the ascent of your authenticity. ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach,
32:Those people who are always improving never become great. Greatness is an eminence, the ascent to which is steep and lofty, and which a man must seize on at once by natural boldness and vigor, and not by patient, wary steps. ~ William Hazlitt,
33:The ascent to greatness, however steep and dangerous, may entertain an active spirit with the consciousness and exercise of its own power: but the possession of a throne could never yet afford a lasting satisfaction to an ambitious mind. ~ Edward Gibbon,
34:Strangeness which is the essence of beauty is the essence of truth, and the essence of the world. I have often felt that; when the ascent of a long hill brought me to the summit of an undiscovered height in London; and I looked down on a new land. ~ Arthur Machen,
35:We are adapted to infinity. We are hard to please, and love nothing which ends: and in nature is no end; but every thing, at the end of one use, is lifted into a superior, and the ascent of these things climbs into daemonic and celestial natures. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson,
36:I fell into hip-hop right from the beginning. I was a teenager in the '60s, so I was putting all my pocket money into buying LPs. I followed the ascent of the Rolling Stones, the Beatles, and Stevie Wonder. I followed popular music very closely, and I've never stopped. ~ Simon de Pury,
37:The love of beauty is really a signal to free ourselves from that sensory attachment, and to begin the ascent of the soul towards the world of ideas, there to participate in the divine version of reproduction, which is the understanding and the passing on of eternal truths. ~ Roger Scruton,
38:For me, the ascent to the peak of the normal ways that torment and anguish. Inspired by the idea of ​​transition was always something that at the moment transcends imagination, seemingly absolutely insurmountable, so absurd in terms of the Himalayan conditions that up beautiful. ~ Wojciech Kurtyka,
39:I'm one of those people who lives for the moment. If you concern yourself with what's going to happen a year from now, or five years from now, you defuse the moment. Whatever comes, comes. For this time I enjoy the ascent. I don't worry about anything except getting thinner thighs. ~ Oprah Winfrey,
40:Everything has been planned. The ascent will be completed in two days’ time. He will climb another one hundred floors today. Another hundred the next day. He does not want to take the lift. The rush of life causes people to drown in the temporary. He wishes to dip into eternity before he leaves. ~ Isa Kamari,
41:Its prime cause was the rise and fall of ‘securitized lending’, which allowed banks to originate loans but then repackage and sell them on. And that was only possible because the rise of banks was followed by the ascent of the second great pillar of the modern financial system: the bond market. ~ Niall Ferguson,
42:Sadly, the ascent of a black man to the presidency of the United States did not, despite all the talk of hope and a post-racial society, signal progress. Instead, it has led to a situation, not so unlike the era of Jim Crow, where a sense of physical vulnerability is shared across classes in the black community.86 ~ Carol Anderson,
43:Places like Edinburgh seemed staid and passé compared to, say, Chicago, where a man could capitalize upon his native talents in grand fashion, regardless of who his father was. In the scheme of things, it was hard not to feel some jealousy that America was on the ascent, and Europe was wallowing in decline, thanks to its own bad behavior. Judging ~ Nancy Horan,
44:The ascent to the divine Life is the human journey, the Work of works, the acceptable Sacrifice. This alone is man's real business in the world and the justification of his existence, without which he would only be an insect crawling among the ephemeral insects on a speck of surface mud and water which has managed to form itself amid the appalling immensities of the physical universe. ~ Sri Aurobindo,
45:I was at one of the lowest points of my life when we started this film [Dream of Life], except, of course, that I had two great children. But the film is not documenting a decline; it's documenting a rise up - first baby steps and then big steps up. The worst that could have ever happened to me had already happened. And so the film is on the ascent. And I think that gives it a nice spirit. ~ Patti Smith,
46:process to take place inside, that blocked energy will be released. When it’s released and allowed to flow up, it becomes purified and merges back into your center of consciousness. This energy then strengthens you instead of weakening you. You begin to go up and up, higher and higher, and you learn the secret of the ascent. The secret of the ascent is to never look down—always look up. ~ Michael A Singer,
47:The beginning of Christendom, is, strictly, at a point out of time. A metphysical trigonometry finds it among the spiritual Secrets, at the meeting of two heavenward lines, one drawn from Bethany along the Ascent of the Messias, the other from Jerusalem against the Descent of the Paraclete. That measurement, the measurement of eternity in operation, of the bright cloud and the rushing wind, is, in effect, theology. ~ Charles Williams,
48:The most powerful drive in the ascent of man is his pleasure in his own skill. He loves to do what he does well and, having done it well, he loves to do it better. You see it in his science. You see it in the magnificence with which he carves and builds, the loving care, the gaiety, the effrontery. The monuments are supposed to commemorate kings and religions, heroes, dogmas, but in the end the man they commemorate is the builder. ~ Jacob Bronowski,
49:Not only during the ascent, but also during the descent my willpower is dulled. The longer I climb the less important the goal
seems to me, the more indifferent I become to myself. My attention
has diminished, my memory is weakened. My mental fatigue is now
greater than the bodily. It is so pleasant to sit doing nothing - and therefore so dangerous. Death through exhaustion is like death
through freezing - a pleasant one. ~ Reinhold Messner,
50:Not only during the ascent but also during the descent my will-power is dulled. The longer I climb the less important the goal seems to me, the more indifferent I become to myself. My attention has diminished, my memory is weakened. My mental fatigue is now greater than the bodily. It is so pleasant to sit doing nothing—and therefore so dangerous. Death through exhaustion is—like death through freezing—a pleasant one. Reinhold Messner The Crystal Horizon ~ Jon Krakauer,
51:Not only during the ascent but also during the descent my willpower is dulled. The longer I climb the less important the goal seems to me, the more indifferent I become to myself. My attention has diminished, my memory is weakened. My mental fatigue is now greater than the bodily. It is so pleasant to sit doing nothing—and therefore so dangerous. Death through exhaustion is—like death through freezing—a pleasant one. Reinhold Messner   The Crystal Horizon I ~ Jon Krakauer,
52:Tweeds, he soon found, are not in warm weather the ideal clothes for mountain climbing, for that was what his progress soon became. The track grew almost precipitous and he was still further hindered by the loose surface and his package of food and wine. He had been climbing for half an hour when he stopped, ate his lunch, drank his wine and smoked a pipe. Some forty minutes later, much refreshed and free of encumbrance, he continued the ascent in better style. ~ Eric Ambler,
53:Sometimes ego is suppressed on the ascent. Sometimes an idea is so powerful or timing is so perfect (or one is born into wealth or power) that it can temporarily support or even compensate for a massive ego. As success arrives, like it does for a team that has just won a championship, ego begins to toy with our minds and weaken the will that made us win in the first place. We know that empires always fall, so we must think about why—and why they seem to always collapse from within. ~ Ryan Holiday,
54:tale is thus both instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values. Shakespeare’s Henry V—the story of a willful and immature prince who becomes a passionate but sensitive, callous but sentimental, inspiring but flawed king—begins with the exhortation “O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend / The brightest heaven of invention.” For Steve Jobs, the ascent to the brightest heaven of invention begins with a tale of two sets of parents, and of ~ Walter Isaacson,
55:I have been scientifically studying the traits and dispositions of the "lower animals" (so-called,) and contrasting them with the traits and dispositions of man. I find the result profoundly humiliating to me. For it obliges me to renounce my allegiance to the Darwinian theory of the Ascent of Man from the Lower Animals; since it now seems plain to me that that theory ought to be vacated in favor of a new and truer one, this new and truer one to be named the Descent of Man from the Higher Animals. ~ Mark Twain,
56:I have been scientifically studying the traits and dispositions of the “lower animals” (so-called,) and contrasting them with the traits and dispositions of man. I find the result profoundly humiliating to me. For it obliges me to renounce my allegiance to the Darwinian theory of the Ascent of Man from the Lower Animals; since it now seems plain to me that that theory ought to be vacated in favor of a new and truer one, this new and truer one to be named the Descent of Man from the Higher Animals. ~ Mark Twain,
57:The fact is that there are two traditions of explanation that march side by side in the ascent of man. One is the analysis of the physical structure of the world. The other is the study of the processes of life: their delicacy, their diversity, the wavering cycles from life to death in the individual and in the species. And these traditions do not come together until the theory of evolution; because until then there is a paradox which cannot be resolved, which cannot be begun, about life. The ~ Jacob Bronowski,
58:Every individual who makes us suffer can be attached by us to a divinity of which he or she is a mere fragmentary reflexion, the lowest step in the ascent that leads to it, a divinity or an Idea which, if we turn to contemplate it, immediately gives us joy instead of the pain which we were feeling before — indeed the whole art of living is to make use of the individuals through whom we suffer as a step enabling us to draw nearer to the divine form which they reflect and thus joyously to people our lives with divinities. ~ Marcel Proust,
59:Like storm clouds, slowly, and then all at once, around the mountaintop an aesthetic appreciation had coalesced. “It became almost an obligatory mark of a vigorous public man of New England in those years that he had made the ascent of Mount Washington,” wrote the Watermans. The sentiment seems to have originated among city dwellers, for whom mountains were exotic. The people who lived at the base of the peaks—who were necessarily fixated on extracting economic and subsistence value from the land—were unlikely to ever climb them. ~ Robert Moor,
60:The children left him and ran. A pathway led up through the close sapling oaks, and almost at the top of the ascent they encountered Mrs. Lewarne—Linnet. She too had a basket on her arm. Now Johnny might believe in fairies and suchlike, but to Mary Mrs. Lewarne was a vision of all things desirable in grown-up life—beauty, grace, carriage, a sweet commanding voice, the true accent, clothes, and all delicate appanages of wealth—everything in short that her own little soul aspired after. And yet not too proud to carry a basket! ~ Daphne du Maurier,
61:For those of us who take literature very seriously, picking up a work of fiction is the start of an adventure comparable in anticipatory excitement to what I imagine is felt by an athlete warming up for a competition, a mountain climber preparing for the ascent: it is the beginning of a process whose outcome is unknown, one that promises the thrill and elation of success but may as easily end in bitter disappointment. Committed readers realize at a certain point that literature is where we have learned a good part of the little we know about living. ~ Edith Grossman,
62:[Men] prefer the foolish belief and the passions of the earth [to the enlightenment of their souls]. They believe the absurd and shrink from the truth."

"No, they do not. They are afraid, that is all. And they must remain on earth until they come to the way of leaving it."

"And how do they leave? How is the ascent made? Must one learn virtue?"

Here she laughs. "You have read too much, and learned too little. Virtue is a road, not a destination. Man cannot be virtuous. Understanding is the goal. When that is achieved, the soul can take wing. ~ Iain Pears,
63:For those who have dwelt in depression's dark wood, and known its inexplicable agony, their return from the abyss is not unlike the ascent of the poet, trudging upward and upward out of hell's black depths and at last emerging into what he saw as "the shining world." There, whoever has been restored to health has almost always been restored to the capacity for serenity and joy, and this may be indemnity enough for having endured the despair beyond despair.

E quindi uscimmo a riveder le stelle.
And so we came forth, and once again beheld the stars.
~ William Styron,
64:Tracing the progress of mankind in the ascending path of civilization, and moral and intellectual culture, our fathers found that the divine ordinance of government, in every stage of the ascent, was adjustable on principles of common reason to the actual condition of a people, and always had for its objects, in the benevolent councils of the divine wisdom, the happiness, the expansion, the security, the elevation of society, and the redemption of man. They sought in vain for any title of authority of man over man, except of superior capacity and higher morality. ~ William M Evarts,
65:Climate change is inviting us to forge a different kind of relationship, one that holds the planet and all of its places, ecosystems, and species sacred - not only in our conception and philosophy, but in our material relationship. Nothing less will deliver us from the environmental crisis that we face. Specifically, we need to turn our primary attention toward healing soil, water, and biodiversity, region by region and place by place... We must enact a civilization-wide unifying purpose: to restore beauty, health, and life to all that has suffered during the Ascent of Humanity. ~ Charles Eisenstein,
66:My child, when a mountain appears on the journey, we try to go to the left, then to the right. We try to find the easy way to navigate our way back to the easier path.…. But the mountain is there to be crossed. It is on that pilgrimage, as we climb higher, that we are forced to shed the layers upon layers we have carried for so long. Then we find that our load is lighter, and we have come to know something of ourselves in the perilous climb…..Do not seek to avoid the mountain, my child. For it has been placed there at a perfect time. It will only become larger if you seek to delay or draw back from the ascent. ~ Jacqueline Winspear,
67:My child, when a mountain appears on the journey, we try to go to the left, then to the right. We try to find the easy way to navigate our way back to the easier path.…. But the mountain is there to be crossed. It is on that pilgrimage, as we climb higher, that we are forced to shed the layers upon layers we have carried for so long. Then we find that our load is lighter, and we have come to know something of ourselves in the perilous climb…..Do not seek to avoid the mountain, my child. For it has been placed there at a perfect time. It will only become larger if you seek to delay or draw back from the ascent. ~ Jacqueline Winspear,
68:Their ascent was accomplished via a wide spiral staircase that sat within the reflective tube. Each of the metal steps were welded to its core. But even here in this elegant construct, the infernal touch hadn’t been neglected. Each of the steps was set not at ninety degrees to the core, but at ninety-seven, or a hundred, or a hundred and five, each one different from the one before but all sending out the same message: nothing was certain here; nothing was safe. There was no railing to break the slide should someone lose their footing, only step after disquieting step designed to make the ascent as vertiginous as possible. ~ Clive Barker,
69:I tried to establish order over the chaos of my imagination, but this essence, the same that presented itself to me still hazily when I was a child, has always struck me as the very heart of truth. It is our duty to set ourselves an end beyond our individual concerns, beyond our convenient, agreeable habits, higher than our own selves, and disdaining laughter, hunger, even death, to toil night and day to attain that end. No, not to attain it. The self-respecting soul, as soon as he reaches his goal, places it still further away. Not to attain it, but never to halt in the ascent. Only thus does life acquire nobility and oneness. ~ Nikos Kazantzakis,
70:Everyone is searching for something. Some people pursue security, others pleasure or power. Yet others look for dreams, or they know not what. There are, however, those who know what they seek but cannot find it in the natural world. For these searchers many clues have been laid out by those who have gone before. The traces are everywhere, although only those with eyes to see or ears to hear perceive them. When the significance of these signs is seriously acted upon, Providence opens a door out of the natural into the supernatural to reveal a ladder from the transient to the Eternal. He who dares the ascent enters the Way of Kabbalah. ~ Z ev Ben Shimon Halevi,
71:Galileo showed that the same physical laws that govern the movements of bodies on earth apply aloft , to the celestial spheres; and our astronauts, as we have all now seen, have been transported by those earthly laws to the moon. They will soon be on Mars and beyond. Furthermore, we know that the mathematics of those outermost spaces will already have been computed here on earth by human minds. There are no laws out there that are not right here; no gods out there that are not right here, and not only here, but within us, in our minds. So what happens now to those childhood images of the ascent of Elijah, Assumption of the Virgin, Ascension of Christ - all bodily - into heaven? ~ Joseph Campbell,
72:The best example of the incarnate presence of Christ to withstand worldly power is Solzhenitsyn, the most distinguished contemporary Russian writer. [...] He realized that we can be free only if we are free in our souls; that a man in a prison camp who has learned to be free inside himself is freer than the freest man, whether in the so-called free world of the West or in the ideological Marxist world of the East.

One chapter in his second Gulag book is called 'The Ascent'. In that chapter he describes this process of illumination in a classic document of what it means to be liberated, to be free through Christ. St. Paul called it 'the glorious freedom of the children of God', the only authentic freedom that exists in this mortal life. ~ Malcolm Muggeridge,
73:Yet, the principle of uncertainty is a bad name. In science or outside of it, we are not uncertain. Our knowledge is merely confined within a certain tolerance. We should call it the principle of tolerance. First in the engineering sense. Science has progressed, step by step, the most successful enterprise in the ascent of man, because it has understood that the exchange of information between man and nature, and man and man, can only take place with a certain tolerance. But I also use the word, passionately, about the real world. All knowledge, all information, between human beings, can only be exchanged within a play of tolerance, and that's whether it's in science, or in literature, or in religion, or in politics, or in any form of though that aspires to dogma. ~ Jacob Bronowski,
74:What we know today, if we know anything at all, is that every individual is unique and that the laws of his life will not be those of any other on this earth. We also know that if divinity is to be found anywhere, it will not be “out there,” among or beyond the planets. Galileo showed that the same physical laws that govern the movements of bodies on earth apply aloft, to the celestial spheres; and our astronauts, as we have all now seen, have been transported by those earthly laws to the moon. They will soon be on Mars and beyond. Furthermore, we know that the mathematics of those outermost spaces will already have been computed here on earth by human minds. There are no laws out there that are not right here; no gods out there that are not right here, and not only here, but within us, in our minds. So what happens now to those childhood images of the ascent of Elijah, Assumption of the Virgin, Ascension of Christ - all bodily - into heaven? ~ Joseph Campbell,
75:I was never able to conquer the distance between persons. An animal is fixed to its here-and-now by the senses, but man manages to detach himself, to remember, to sympathize with others, to visualize their states of mind and feelings: this, fortunately, is not true. In such attempts at pseudo merging and transferral we are only able, imperfectly, darkly, to visualize ourselves.

What would happen to us if we could truly sympathize with others, feel with them, suffer for them? The fact that human anguish, fear, and suffering melt away with the death of the individual, that nothing remains of the ascents, the declines, the orgasms, and the agonies, is a praiseworthy gift of evolution, which made us like the animals. If from every unfortunate, from every victim, there remained even a single atom of his feelings, if thus grew the inheritance of
the generations, if even a spark could pass from man to man, the world would be full of raw, bowel-torn howling.

We are like snails, each stuck to his own leaf. ~ Stanis aw Lem,
76:Progress. — Let us not be deceived! Time marches forward; we'd like to believe that everything that is in it also marches forward— that the development is one that moves forward. The most level-headed are led astray by this illusion. But the nineteenth century does not represent progress over the sixteenth; and the German spirit of 1888 represents a regress from the German spirit of 1788. "Mankind" does not advance, it does not even exist. The overall aspect is that of a tremendous experimental laboratory in which a few successes are scored, scattered throughout all ages, while there are untold failures, and all order, logic, union, and obligingness are lacking. How can we fail to recognize that the ascent of Christianity is a movement of decadence? -That the German Reformation is a recrudescence of Christian barbarism? -That the Revolution destroyed the instinct for a grand organization of society? Man represents no progress over the animal: the civilized tenderfoot is an abortion compared to the Arab and Corsican; the Chinese is a more successful type, namely more durable, than the European. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche,
77:As we made our halting, laborious way forward, away from the flying smuts of the smoke stack, we were alternately jostled together, then strained, nearly sundered, arms and fingers interlocked as I held the rail and Julia clung to me, thrust together again, drawn apart; then, in a plunge deeper than the rest, I found myself flung across her, pressing her against the rail, warding myself off her with the arms that held her prisoner on either side, and as the ship paused at the end of its drop as though gathering strength for the ascent, we stood thus embraced, in the open, cheek against cheek, her hair blowing across my eyes; the dark horizon of tumbling water, flashing now with gold, stood still above us, then came sweeping down till I was staring through Julia’s dark hair into a wide and golden sky, and she was thrown forward on my heart, held up by my hands on the rail, her face still pressed to mine.

In that minute, with her lips to my ear and her breath warm in the salt wind, Julia said, though I had not spoken, “Yes, now,” and as the ship righted herself and for the moment ran into calmer waters, Julia led me below. ~ Evelyn Waugh,
78:The descent beckons
as the ascent beckoned
Memory is a kind
of accomplishment
a sort of renewal
even
an initiation, since the spaces it opens are new places
inhabited by hordes
heretofore unrealized
of new kinds—
since their movements
are toward new objectives
(even though formerly they were abandoned)

No defeat is made up entirely of defeat—since
the world it opens is always a place
formerly
unsuspected. A
world lost
a world unsuspected
beckons to new places
and no whiteness (lost) is so white as the memory
of whiteness

With evening, love wakens
though its shadows
which are alive by reason
of the sun shining—
grow sleepy now and drop away
from desire

Love without shadows stirs now
beginning to awaken
as night
advances

The descent
made up of despairs
and without accomplishment
realizes a new awakening:
which is a reversal
of despair
For what we cannot accomplish, what
is denied to love
what we have lost in the anticipation—
a descent follows
endless and indestructible ~ William Carlos Williams,
79: Parisian War Song
Spring is evidently here;
for the ascent of Thiers
and Picard from the green Estates lays
its splendours wide open! O May!
What delirious bare bums!
O Sevres Meudon, Bagneux, Asnieres,
listen now to the welcome arrivals
scattering springtime joys!
They have shakos, and sabers, and tom-toms,
and none of the old candleboxes;
and skiffs which have nev… nev..
are cutting the lake of bloodstained waters.
More than ever before, we roister,
as on to our ant-heaps come tumbling the yellow heads,
on these extraordinary dawns:
Theirs and Picards are Cupids;
and beheaders of sunflowers too;
they paint peaceful landscapes
(Corots) with insecticide (paraffin):
look how their tropes de-cockchafer the trees…
'They're familiars of the Great What's-his-name!...' And Favre, lying among the irisis,
blinks and weeps crocodile tears,
and sniffs his peppery sniff!
The Big City has hot cobblestones,
in spite of your showers of paraffin;
and decidedly we shall have to liven you up in your parts..
And the Rustics who take their ease in long squattings
will hear boughs breaking among the red rustlings.
~ Arthur Rimbaud,
80:In his endless journeys of exploration, crawling on all fours around the Urals and the Amazon and the Australian archipelagos which the furniture of the house was to him, sometimes he no longer knew where he was. And he would be found under the sink in the kitchen, ecstatically observing a patrol of cockroaches as if they were wild colts on the prairie. He even recognized a ttar in a gob of spit.
But nothing had the power to make him rejoice as much as Nino's presence. It seemed that, in his opinion, Nino concentrated in himself the total festivity of the world, which everywhere else was to be found scattered and divided. For in Giuseppe's eyes, Nino represented by himself all the myriad colors, and the glow of fireworks, and every species of fantastic and lovable animal, and carnival shows. Mysteriously, he could sense Nino's arrival from the moment when he began the ascent of the stairs! And he would hurry immediately, as fast as he could with his method, toward the entrance, repeating ino ino, in an almost dramatic rejoicing of all his limbs. At times, even, when Nino came home late at night, he, sleeping, would stir slightly at the sound of the key, and with a trusting little smile he would murmur in a faint voice: Ino. ~ Elsa Morante,
81:Russia had performed her miracle noiselessly, without words. Like the serpent whose new garment has not yet developed and which is cold and creeps into the sun to warm itself, so too my soul crept into the new sun. When I awoke, I was no longer the same person, because formerly I had not known, and now I knew. I kept asking myself how a dream could change a man’s life. It does not change it, I replied; it simply announces that the change has taken place. Toward what do men direct all the frenzied efforts they feel compelled to make? What is the purpose? Formerly I would have smiled beatifically and answered, “Phantasmagoria. The world does not exist. Injustice, hunger, joy, sorrow, and effort do not exist. Everything is a specter. Blow, and all will be dispelled.” Now, however, I jumped to my feet with a feeling of relief. Dusk had begun to descend over Registan Square. I raised my head. “What is the purpose? Do not ask. No one knows, not even God, for He advances along with us, He too, searching and being exposed to danger; He too is given over to the struggle. Hunger and injustice exist in the heart, as does an abundance of darkness. These things you see are not specters; no matter how much you blow, they will not be dispelled. They are flesh and bone. Touch them; they exist. Don’t you hear a cry in the air? They are crying. What are they crying? Help! To whom are they crying? You! You: every man. Rise up. Our duty is not to ask questions, but to clasp hands one and all and mount the ascent. ~ Nikos Kazantzakis,
82:With the seizing of the means of production by society, production of commodities is done away with, and, simultaneously, the mastery of the product over the producer. Anarchy in social production is replaced by systematic, definite organization. The struggle for individual existence disappears. Then, for the first time, man, in a certain sense, is finally marked off from the rest of the animal kingdom, and emerges from mere animal conditions of existence into really human ones. The whole sphere of the conditions of life which environ man, and which have hitherto ruled man, now comes under the dominion and control of man, who for the first time becomes the real, conscious lord of nature, because he has now become master of his own social organization. The laws of his own social action, hitherto standing face-to-face with man as laws of Nature foreign to, and dominating him, will then be used with full understanding, and so mastered by him. Man's own social organization, hitherto confronting him as a necessity imposed by Nature and history, now becomes the result of his own free action. The extraneous objective forces that have, hitherto, governed history,pass under the control of man himself. Only from that time will man himself, more and more consciously, make his own history — only from that time will the social causes set in movement by him have, in the main and in a constantly growing measure, the results intended by him. It is the ascent of man from the kingdom of necessity to the kingdom of freedom. ~ Friedrich Engels,
83:rather than just websites. Along the way he produced not only transforming products but also, on his second try, a lasting company, endowed with his DNA, that is filled with creative designers and daredevil engineers who could carry forward his vision. In August 2011, right before he stepped down as CEO, the enterprise he started in his parents’ garage became the world’s most valuable company. This is also, I hope, a book about innovation. At a time when the United States is seeking ways to sustain its innovative edge, and when societies around the world are trying to build creative digital-age economies, Jobs stands as the ultimate icon of inventiveness, imagination, and sustained innovation. He knew that the best way to create value in the twenty-first century was to connect creativity with technology, so he built a company where leaps of the imagination were combined with remarkable feats of engineering. He and his colleagues at Apple were able to think differently: They developed not merely modest product advances based on focus groups, but whole new devices and services that consumers did not yet know they needed. He was not a model boss or human being, tidily packaged for emulation. Driven by demons, he could drive those around him to fury and despair. But his personality and passions and products were all interrelated, just as Apple’s hardware and software tended to be, as if part of an integrated system. His tale is thus both instructive and cautionary, filled with lessons about innovation, character, leadership, and values. Shakespeare’s Henry V—the story of a willful and immature prince who becomes a passionate but sensitive, callous but sentimental, inspiring but flawed king—begins with the exhortation “O for a Muse of fire, that would ascend / The brightest heaven of invention.” For Steve Jobs, the ascent to the brightest heaven of invention begins with a tale of two sets of parents, and of growing up in a valley that was just learning how to turn silicon into gold. Paul Jobs with Steve, 1956 The Los Altos house with the garage where Apple was ~ Walter Isaacson,
84:The following is one of the oldest sermon illustrations used in the Christian church. It also tests one’s understanding of the Christian life. There once lived an ugly, hunchback dwarf. No one ever invited him to a party. No one showed him love or even attention. He became disillusioned with life and decided to climb a mountain and throw himself from its peak into the abyss. When he ascended the mountain, he met a beautiful girl. He talked to her and discovered that she was climbing the mountain for the same purpose. Her suffering was at the other extreme. She had everyone’s attention and love, but the one she loved had forsaken her for another girl, one with riches. She felt life had no meaning for her any longer, so they decided to make the ascent together. While they climbed, they met a man who introduced himself as a police officer in search of a very dangerous bandit who had robbed and murdered many people. The king had promised a large reward to the person who captured him. The police officer was very confident: “I will catch him because I know he has a feature by which he can be recognized. He has six fingers on his right hand. The police have been looking for him for years. For the last two or three, nothing has been heard from him, but he must pay for a multitude of past crimes.” The three climbed the mountain. Near its peak was a monastery. Its abbot, although he had become a monk only recently, had quickly attained great renown for saintliness. When they entered the monastery, he came to meet them. You could see the glory of God in his face. As the girl bowed to kiss his right hand, she saw he had six fingers. With this, the story ends. Those who hear this story are perplexed. It can’t finish like this! What happened to the dwarf, the girl, the policeman? Was the criminal caught? The story’s beauty is that it does finish here. Something beautiful has happened: A criminal hunted because of his many robberies and murders has become a great saint, renowned for his godly life. All the rest is of no further interest. The great miracle has been performed. Christ has been born in the heart of a man of very low character. ~ Richard Wurmbrand,
85:The ascent of the soul through love, which Plato describes in the Phaedrus, is symbolized in the figure of Aphrodite Urania, and this was the Venus painted by Botticelli, who was incidentally an ardent Platonist, and member of the Platonist circle around Pico della Mirandola. Botticelli’s Venus is not erotic: she is a vision of heavenly beauty, a visitation from other and higher spheres, and a call to transcendence. Indeed, she is self-evidently both the ancestor and the descendant of the Virgins of Fra Filippo Lippi: the ancestor in her pre-Christian meaning, the descendant in absorbing all that had been achieved through the artistic representation of the Virgin Mary as the symbol of untainted flesh. The post-Renaissance rehabilitation of sexual desire laid the foundations for a genuinely erotic art, an art that would display the human being as both subject and object of desire, but also as a free individual whose desire is a favour consciously bestowed. But this rehabilitation of sex leads us to raise what has become one of the most important questions confronting art and the criticism of art in our time: that of the difference, if there is one, between erotic art and pornography. Art can be erotic and also beautiful, like a Titian Venus. But it cannot be beautiful and also pornographic—so we believe, at least. And it is important to see why. In distinguishing the erotic and the pornographic we are really distinguishing two kinds of interest: interest in the embodied person and interest in the body—and, in the sense that I intend, these interests are incompatible. (See the discussion in Chapter 2.) Normal desire is an inter-personal emotion. Its aim is a free and mutual surrender, which is also a uniting of two individuals, of you and me—through our bodies, certainly, but not merely as our bodies. Normal desire is a person to person response, one that seeks the selfhood that it gives. Objects can be substituted for each other, subjects not. Subjects, as Kant persuasively argued, are free individuals; their non-substitutability belongs to what they essentially are. Pornography, like slavery, is a denial of the human subject, a way of negating the moral demand that free beings must treat each other as ends in themselves. ~ Roger Scruton,
86:Blessed are the poor, for theirs is the kingdom of God (Luke 6:20). I'm learning what it means to descend, which is so revolutionary it often leaves me gasping. I have been trying to ascend my entire life. Up, up, next level, a notch higher, the top is better, top of the food chain, all for God's work and glory, of course. The pursuit of ascension is crippling and has stunted my faith more than any other evil I've battled. It has saddled me with so much to defend, and it doesn't deliver. I need more and more of what doesn't work. I'm insatiable, and ironically, the more I accumulate, the less I enjoy any of it. Instead of satisfaction, it produces toxic fear in me; I'm always one slip away from losing it all. Consequently, my love for others is tainted because they unwittingly become articles for consumption. How is this person making me feel better? How is she making me stronger? How is he contributing to my agenda? What can this group do for me? I am an addict, addicted to the ascent and thus positioning myself above people who can propel my upward momentum and below those who are also longing for a higher rank and might pull me up with them. It feels desperate and frantic, and I'm so done being enslaved to the elusive top rung. When Jesus told us to 'take the lowest place' (Luke 14:10), it was more than just a strategy for social justice. It was even more than wooing us to the bottom for communion, since that is where He is always found. The path of descent becomes our own liberation. We are freed from the exhausting stance of defense. We are no longer compelled to be right and are thus relieved from the burden of maintaining some reputation. We are released from the idols of greed, control, and status. The pressure to protect the house of cards is alleviated when we take the lowest place. The ascent is so ingrained in my thought patterns that it has been physically painful to experience reformation at the bottom. The compulsion to defend myself against misrepresentation nearly put me in the grave recently. I was tormented with chaotic inner dialogues, and there were days I was so plagued with protecting my rung that I couldn't get out of bed. With every step lower, the stripping-away process was more excruciating. I had no idea how tightly I clung to reputation and approval or how selfishly I behaved to maintain it. Getting to the top requires someone else to be on the bottom; being right means someone else must be wrong. It is the nature of the beast. ~ Jen Hatmaker,
87:Now, even though it be neither necessity nor caprice, history, for the authentic reactionary, is not, for all that, an interior dialectic of the immanent will, but rather a temporal adventure between man and that which transcends him. His labors are traces, on the disturbed sand, of the body of a beast and the aura of an angel. History is a tatter, torn from man’s freedom, waving in the breath of destiny. Man cannot be silent because his liberty is not merely a sanctuary where he escapes from deadening routine and takes refuge in order to become his own master. But in the free act the radical does not attain possession of his essence. Liberty is not an abstract possibility of choosing among known goods, but rather the concrete condition in which we are granted the possession of new goods. Freedom is not a momentary judgement between conflicting instincts, but rather the summit from which man contemplates the ascent of new stars among the luminous dust of the starry sky. Liberty places man among prohibitions that are not physical and imperatives that are not vital. The free moment dispels the unreal brightness of the day, in order that the motion of the universe which slides its fleeting lights over the shuddering of our flesh might rise up on the horizon of our soul.

If the progressive casts himself into the future, and the conservative into the past, the authentic reactionary does not measure his anxiety with the history of yesterday or with the history of tomorrow. He does not extol what the new dawn might bring, nor is he terrified by the last shadows of the night. His spirit rises up to a space where the essential accosts him with its immortal presence. One escapes the slavery of history by pursuing in the wildness of the world the traces of divine footsteps. Man and his deeds are a vital but servile and mortal flesh that breathes gusts from beyond the mountains. To be reactionary is to champion causes that do not turn up on the notice board of history, causes where losing does not matter. It is to know that we only discover what we think we invent; to admit that our imagination does not create, but only lays bare smooth surfaces. It is not to espouse settled cases, nor to plead for determined conclusions, but rather to submit our will to the necessity that does not constrain, to surrender our freedom to the exigency that does not compel; it is to find sleeping certainties that guide us to the edge of ancient pools. The reactionary is not a nostalgic dreamer of a canceled past, but rather a seeker of sacred shades upon eternal hills. ~ Nicol s G mez D vila,
88:I HAD TO GO to America for a while to give some talks. Going to America always does me good. It’s where I’m from, after all. There’s baseball on the TV, people are friendly and upbeat, they don’t obsess about the weather except when there is weather worth obsessing about, you can have all the ice cubes you want. Above all, visiting America gives me perspective. Consider two small experiences I had upon arriving at a hotel in downtown Austin, Texas. When I checked in, the clerk needed to record my details, naturally enough, and asked for my home address. Our house doesn’t have a street number, just a name, and I have found in the past that that is more deviance than an American computer can sometimes cope with, so I gave our London address. The girl typed in the building number and street name, then said: “City?” I replied: “London.” “Can you spell that please?” I looked at her and saw that she wasn’t joking. “L-O-N-D-O-N,” I said. “Country?” “England.” “Can you spell that?” I spelled England. She typed for a moment and said: “The computer won’t accept England. Is that a real country?” I assured her it was. “Try Britain,” I suggested. I spelled that, too—twice (we got the wrong number of T’s the first time)—and the computer wouldn’t take that either. So I suggested Great Britain, United Kingdom, UK, and GB, but those were all rejected, too. I couldn’t think of anything else to suggest. “It’ll take France,” the girl said after a minute. “I beg your pardon?” “You can have ‘London, France.’ ” “Seriously?” She nodded. “Well, why not?” So she typed “London, France,” and the system was happy. I finished the check-in process and went with my bag and plastic room key to a bank of elevators a few paces away. When the elevator arrived, a young woman was in it already, which I thought a little strange because the elevator had come from one of the upper floors and now we were going back up there again. About five seconds into the ascent, she said to me in a suddenly alert tone: “Excuse me, was that the lobby back there?” “That big room with a check-in desk and revolving doors to the street? Why, yes, it was.” “Shoot,” she said and looked chagrined. Now I am not for a moment suggesting that these incidents typify Austin, Texas, or America generally or anything like that. But it did get me to thinking that our problems are more serious than I had supposed. When functioning adults can’t identify London, England, or a hotel lobby, I think it is time to be concerned. This is clearly a global problem and it’s spreading. I am not at all sure how we should tackle such a crisis, but on the basis of what we know so far, I would suggest, as a start, quarantining Texas. ~ Bill Bryson,
89:Galileo found that a ball rolling down an incline acquires just enough velocity to return it to the same vertical height on a second incline of any slope, and he learned to see that experimental situation as like the pendulum with a point-mass for a bob. Huyghens then solved the problem of the center of oscillation of a physical pendulum by imagining that the extended body of the latter was composed of Galilean point-pendula, the bonds between which could be instantaneously released at any point in the swing. After the bonds were released, the individual point-pendula would swing freely, but their collective center of gravity when each attained its highest point would, like that of Galileo's pendulum, rise only to the height from which the center of gravity of the extended pendulum had begun to fall. Finally, Daniel Bernoulli discovered how to make the flow of water from an orifice resemble Huyghens' pendulum. Determine the descent of the center of gravity of the water in tank and jet during an infinitesimal interval of time. Next imagine that each particle of water afterward moves separately upward to the maximum height attainable with the velocity acquired during that interval. The ascent of the center of gravity of the individual particles must then equal the descent of the center of gravity of the water in tank and jet. From that view of the problem the long-sought speed of efflux followed at once.

That example should begin to make clear what I mean by learning from problems to see situations as like each other, as subjects for the application of the same scientific law or law-sketch. Simultaneously it should show why I refer to the consequential knowledge of nature acquired while learning the similarity relationship and thereafter embodied in a way of viewing physical situations rather than in rules or laws. The three problems in the example, all of them exemplars for eighteenth-century mechanicians, deploy only one law of nature. Known as the Principle of vis viva, it was usually stated as: "Actual descent equals potential ascent." Bernoulli's application of the law should suggest how consequential it was. Yet the verbal statement of the law, taken by itself, is virtually impotent. Present it to a contemporary student of physics, who knows the words and can do all these problems but now employs different means. Then imagine what the words, though all well known, can have said to a man who did not know even the problems. For him the generalization could begin to function only when he learned to recognize "actual descents" and "potential ascents" as ingredients of nature, and that is to learn something, prior to the law, about the situations that nature does and does not present. That sort of learning is not acquired by exclusively verbal means. Rather it comes as one is given words together with concrete examples of how they function in use; nature and words are learned together. TO borrow once more Michael Polanyi's useful phrase, what results from this process is "tacit knowledge" which is learned by doing science rather than by acquiring rules for doing it. ~ Thomas S Kuhn,
90:Let us now assume that under truly extraordinary circumstances, the daimon nevertheless breaks through in the individual, so to speak, and is this able to let its destructive transcendence be felt: then one would have a kind of active experience of death. Thereupon the second connection becomes clear: why the figure of the daimon or doppelgänger in the ancient myths could be melded with the deity of death. In the Nordic tradition the warrior sees his Valkyrie precisely at the moment of death or mortal danger.

In religious asceticism, mortification, self-renunciation, and the impulse of devotion to God are the preferred methods of provoking and successfully overcoming the crisis I have just mentioned. Everyone knows the expressions which refer to these states, such as the 'mystical death' or 'dark night of the soul', etc. In contrast to this, within the framework of a heroic tradition, the path to the same goal is the active rapture, the Dionysian unleashing of the active element. At its lower levels, we find phenomenons such as the use of dance as a sacred technique for achieving an ecstasy of the soul that summons and uses profound energies. While the individual’s life is surrendered to Dionysian rhythm, another life sinks into it, as if it where his abyssal roots surfacing. The 'wild host' Furies, Erinyes, and suchlike spiritual natures are symbolic picturings of this energy, thus corresponding to a manifestation of the daimon in its terrifying and active transcendence. At a higher level we find sacred war-games; higher still, war itself. And this brings us back to the ancient Aryan concept of battle and the warrior ascetic.

At the climax of danger and heroic battle, the possibility for such an extraordinary experience was recognized. The Lating ludere, meaning both 'to play' and 'to fight', seems to contain the idea of release. This is one of the many allusions to the inherent ability of battle to release deeply-buried powers from individual limitations and let them freely emerge. Hence the third comparison: the daimon, the Lar, the individualizing I, etc., are not only identical with the Furies, Erinyes, and other unleashed Dionysian natures, which themselves have many traits similar to the goddess of death — they are also synonymous with the storm maidens of battle, the Valkyries and Fravartis. In the texts, for example, the Fravartis are called 'the terrible, the all-powerful', 'those who attack in storm and bestow victory upon those who conjure them', or, more precisely, those who conjure them up in themselves.

From there to the final comparison is only a short step. In the Aryan tradition the same martial beings eventually take on the form of victory-goddesses, a transformation which denotes the happy completion of the inner experience in question. Just as the daimon or doppelgänger signifies a deep, supra-individual power in its latent condition as compared to ordinary consciousness; just as the Furies and Erinyes reflect a particular manifestation of daimonic rages and eruptions (and the goddesses of death, Valkyries, Fravartis, etc., refer to the same conditions, as long as these are facilitated by battle and heroism) — in the same way the goddess of victory is the expression of the triumph of the I over this power. She signifies the victorious ascent to a state unendangered by ecstasies and sub-personal forms of disintegration, a danger that always lurks behind the frenetic moment of Dionysian and even heroic action. The ascent to a spiritual, truly supra-personal condition that makes one free, immortal, and internally indestructible, when the 'Two becomes One', expresses itself in this image of mythical consciousness. ~ Julius Evola,
91: Maiden-Song
Long ago and long ago,
And long ago still,
There dwelt three merry maidens
Upon a distant hill.
One was tall Megan,
And one was dainty May,
But one was fair Margaret,
More fair than I can say,
Long ago and long ago.
When Megan plucked the thorny rose,
And when May pulled the brier,
Half the birds would swoop to see,
Half the beasts draw nigher;
Half the fishes of the streams
Would dart up to admire:
But when Margaret plucked a flag-flower,
Or poppy hot aflame,
All the beasts and all the birds
And all the fishes came
To her hand more soft than snow.
Strawberry leaves and May-dew
In brisk morning air,
Strawberry leaves and May-dew
Make maidens fair.
'I go for strawberry leaves,'
Megan said one day:
'Fair Margaret can bide at home,
But you come with me, May;
Up the hill and down the hill,
Along the winding way 30
You and I are used to go.'
So these two fair sisters
Went with innocent will
Up the hill and down again,
And round the homestead hill:
While the fairest sat at home,
258
Margaret like a queen,
Like a blush-rose, like the moon
In her heavenly sheen,
Fragrant-breathed as milky cow
Or field of blossoming bean,
Graceful as an ivy bough
Born to cling and lean;
Thus she sat to sing and sew.
When she raised her lustrous eyes
A beast peeped at the door;
When she downward cast her eyes
A fish gasped on the floor;
When she turned away her eyes
A bird perched on the sill,
Warbling out its heart of love,
Warbling warbling still,
With pathetic pleadings low.
Light-foot May with Megan
Sought the choicest spot,
Clothed with thyme-alternate grass:
Then, while day waxed hot,
Sat at ease to play and rest,
A gracious rest and play;
The loveliest maidens near or far,
When Margaret was away,
Who sat at home to sing and sew.
Sun-glow flushed their comely cheeks,
Wind-play tossed their hair,
Creeping things among the grass
Stroked them here and there;
Megan piped a merry note,
A fitful wayward lay,
While shrill as bird on topmost twig
Piped merry May;
Honey-smooth the double flow.
Sped a herdsman from the vale,
Mounting like a flame,
All on fire to hear and see,
259
With floating locks he came.
Looked neither north nor south,
Neither east nor west,
But sat him down at Megan's feet
As love-bird on his nest,
And wooed her with a silent awe,
With trouble not expressed;
She sang the tears into his eyes,
The heart out of his breast:
So he loved her, listening so.
She sang the heart out of his breast,
The words out of his tongue;
Hand and foot and pulse he paused
Till her song was sung.
Then he spoke up from his place
Simple words and true:
'Scanty goods have I to give,
Scanty skill to woo;
But I have a will to work,
And a heart for you:
Bid me stay or bid me go.'
Then Megan mused within herself:
'Better be first with him,
Than dwell where fairer Margaret sits,
Who shines my brightness dim,
For ever second where she sits,
However fair I be:
I will be lady of his love,
And he shall worship me;
I will be lady of his herds
And stoop to his degree,
At home where kids and fatlings grow.'
Sped a shepherd from the height
Headlong down to look,
(White lambs followed, lured by love
Of their shepherd's crook):
He turned neither east nor west,
Neither north nor south,
260
But knelt right down to May, for love
Of her sweet-singing mouth;
Forgot his flocks, his panting flocks
In parching hill-side drouth;
Forgot himself for weal or woe.
Trilled her song and swelled her song
With maiden coy caprice
In a labyrinth of throbs,
Pauses, cadences;
Clear-noted as a dropping brook,
Soft-noted like the bees,
Wild-noted as the shivering wind
Forlorn through forest trees:
Love-noted like the wood-pigeon
Who hides herself for love,
Yet cannot keep her secret safe,
But coos and coos thereof:
Thus the notes rang loud or low.
He hung breathless on her breath;
Speechless, who listened well;
Could not speak or think or wish
Till silence broke the spell.
Then he spoke, and spread his hands,
Pointing here and there:
'See my sheep and see the lambs,
Twin lambs which they bare.
All myself I offer you,
All my flocks and care,
Your sweet song hath moved me so.'
In her fluttered heart young May
Mused a dubious while:
'If he loves me as he says'-Her lips curved with a smile:
'Where Margaret shines like the sun
I shine but like a moon;
If sister Megan makes her choice
I can make mine as soon;
At cockcrow we were sister-maids,
We may be brides at noon.'
261
Said Megan, 'Yes;' May said not 'No.'
Fair Margaret stayed alone at home,
Awhile she sang her song,
Awhile sat silent, then she thought:
'My sisters loiter long.'
That sultry noon had waned away,
Shadows had waxen great:
'Surely,' she thought within herself,
'My sisters loiter late.'
She rose, and peered out at the door,
With patient heart to wait,
And heard a distant nightingale
Complaining of its mate;
Then down the garden slope she walked,
Down to the garden gate,
Leaned on the rail and waited so.
The slope was lightened by her eyes
Like summer lightning fair,
Like rising of the haloed moon
Lightened her glimmering hair,
While her face lightened like the sun
Whose dawn is rosy white.
Thus crowned with maiden majesty
She peered into the night,
Looked up the hill and down the hill,
To left hand and to right,
Flashing like fire-flies to and fro.
Waiting thus in weariness
She marked the nightingale
Telling, if any one would heed,
Its old complaining tale.
Then lifted she her voice and sang,
Answering the bird:
Then lifted she her voice and sang,
Such notes were never heard
From any bird when Spring's in blow.
The king of all that country
Coursing far, coursing near,
262
Curbed his amber-bitted steed,
Coursed amain to hear;
All his princes in his train,
Squire, and knight, and peer,
With his crown upon his head,
His sceptre in his hand,
Down he fell at Margaret's knees
Lord king of all that land,
To her highness bending low.
Every beast and bird and fish
Came mustering to the sound,
Every man and every maid
From miles of country round:
Megan on her herdsman's arm,
With her shepherd May,
Flocks and herds trooped at their heels
Along the hill-side way;
No foot too feeble for the ascent,
Not any head too grey;
Some were swift and none were slow.
So Margaret sang her sisters home
In their marriage mirth;
Sang free birds out of the sky,
Beasts along the earth,
Sang up fishes of the deep-All breathing things that move
Sang from far and sang from near
To her lovely love;
Sang together friend and foe;
Sang a golden-bearded king
Straightway to her feet,
Sang him silent where he knelt
In eager anguish sweet.
But when the clear voice died away,
When longest echoes died,
He stood up like a royal man
And claimed her for his bride.
So three maids were wooed and won
In a brief May-tide,
263
Long ago and long ago.
~ Christina Georgina Rossetti,

--- IN CHAPTERS (in Dictionaries, in Quotes, in Chapters)



89

   2 Integral Yoga
   1 Kabbalah


   23 Sri Aurobindo
   8 The Mother


   14 The Synthesis Of Yoga
   10 Letters On Yoga III
   9 The Life Divine
   8 The Mothers Agenda
   7 Essays In Philosophy And Yoga
   4 Letters On Yoga I
   3 The Divine Comedy
   3 Savitri
   3 Essays On The Gita
   2 The Secret Of The Veda
   2 The Integral Yoga
   2 On Education
   2 Knowledge of the Higher Worlds
   2 Isha Upanishad
   2 Essays Divine And Human


0.02_-_The_Three_Steps_of_Nature, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
   as well as ascend the great stair of existence. For if the eternal
  Wisdom exists at all, the faculty of Mind also must have some high use and destiny. That use must depend on its place in the Ascent and in the return and that destiny must be a fulfilment and transfiguration, not a rooting out or an annulling.
  

0.06_-_1956, #Agenda Vol 1, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  
  There was indeed a possibility to enter into contact with the Thing individually - this was even what Sri Aurobindo had described as being the necessary procedure: a certain number of people would enter into contact with this Force through their inner effort and their aspiration. We had called it the Ascent towards the Supermind. And IF and when they had touched the Supermind through an inner ascent (that is, by freeing themselves from the material consciousness), they should have recognized it SPONTANEOUSLY as soon as it came. But a preliminary contact was indispensable - if you have never touched it, how can you recognize it?
  That's how the universal movement works (I read this to you a few days ago): through their inner effort and inner progress, certain individuals, who are the pioneers, the forerunners, enter into communication with the new Force which is to manifest, and they receive it in themselves. And because a number of calls like this surge forth, the thing becomes possible, and the era, the time, the moment for the manifestation comes. This is how it happened - and the Manifestation took place.

0.06_-_INTRODUCTION, #Dark Night of the Soul, #Saint John of the Cross, #Christianity
  SOMEWHAT reluctantly, out of respect for a venerable tradition, we publish the
  Dark Night as a separate treatise, though in reality it is a continuation of the Ascent
  of Mount Carmel and fulfils the undertakings given in it:
  --
  understand, and of great practical utility, comparable to those in the first book of
  the Ascent which deal with the active purgation of the desires of sense.
  In Chapter viii, St. John of the Cross begins to describe the Passive Night of
  --
  body. The Saint is particularly effective here, and we may once more compare this
  chapter with a similar one in the Ascent (II, xiii)that in which he fixes the point
  where the soul may abandon discursive meditation and enter the contemplation
  --
  In Chapter x, the Saint describes the discipline which the soul in this Dark
  Night must impose upon itself; this, as might be logically deduced from the Ascent,
  consists in 'allowing the soul to remain in peace and quietness,' content 'with a
  --
  treatise. They lose both in flexibility and in substance through the closeness with
  which they follow the stanzas of which they are the exposition. In the Ascent and
  the Dark Night, on the other hand, we catch only the echoes of the poem, which are

02.06_-_The_Integral_Yoga_and_Other_Yogas, #The Integral Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  The ordinary
  Yoga does not go beyond the spiritual mind - people feel at the top of the head the joining with the Brahman, but they are not aware of a consciousness above the head. In the same way in the ordinary Yoga one feels the Ascent of the awakened inner consciousness (Kundalini) to the brahmarandhra where the Prakriti joins the Brahman-consciousness, but they do not feel the descent. Some may have had these things, but I don't know that they understood their nature, principle or place in a complete sadhana. At least I never heard of these things from others before
  I found them out in my own experience. The reason is that the old Yogins when they went above the spiritual mind passed into samadhi, which means that they did not attempt to be conscious in these higher planes - their aim being to pass away into the
  --
  It is new as compared with the old Yogas:
  (1) Because it aims not at a departure out of world and life into a Heaven or a Nirvana, but at a change of life and existence, not as something subordinate or incidental, but as a distinct and central object. If there is a descent in other Yogas, yet it is only an incident on the way or resulting from the Ascent - the Ascent is the real thing. Here the Ascent is indispensable, but what is decisive, what is finally aimed at is the resulting descent. It is the descent of the new consciousness attained by the Ascent that is the stamp and seal of the sadhana. Even Tantra and Vaishnavism end in the release from life; here the object is the divine fulfilment of life.
  

03.01_-_The_Evolution_of_Consciousness, #The Integral Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  the Ascent of the human soul to the supreme Spirit is that soul's highest aim and necessity, for that is the supreme reality; but there can be too the descent of the Spirit and its powers into the world and that would justify the existence of the material world also, give a meaning, a divine purpose to the creation and solve its riddle. East and West could be reconciled in the pursuit of the highest and largest ideal, Spirit embrace Matter and Matter find its own true reality and the hidden Reality in all things in the Spirit.
  

03.01_-_The_Pursuit_of_the_Unknowable, #Savitri, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  Fronting him with the incommensurable.
  Then to the Ascent there came a mighty term.
  A height was reached where nothing made could live,

03.03_-_The_House_of_the_Spirit_and_the_New_Creation, #Savitri, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  He stood fulfilled on the world's highest line
  Awaiting the Ascent beyond the world,
  Awaiting the descent the world to save.

1.01_-_The_Dark_Forest._The_Hill_of_Difficulty._The_Panther,_the_Lion,_and_the_Wolf._Virgil., #The Divine Comedy, #Dante Alighieri, #Christianity
  So that the firm foot ever was the lower.
  And lo! almost where the Ascent began,
  A panther light and swift exceedingly,

1.02.2.2_-_Self-Realisation, #Isha Upanishad, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  and the world (s and jagat ) in the complete knowledge of the
  Brahman, to renounce desire and illusion through the Ascent to
  the pure Self and the Non-Becoming and yet to enjoy by means

1.02_-_Self-Consecration, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  17:The higher mind in man is something other, loftier, purer, vaster, more powerful than the reason or logical intelligence. The animal is a vital and sensational being; man, it is said, is distinguished from the animal by the possession of reason. But that is a very summary, a very imperfect and misleading account of the matter. For reason is only a particular and limited utilitarian and instrumental activity that proceeds from something much greater than itself, from a power that dwells in an ether more luminous, wider, illimitable. The true and ultimate, as distinguished from the immediate or intermediate, importance of our observing, reasoning, inquiring, judging intelligence is that it prepares the human being for the right reception and right action of a Light from above which must progressively replace in him the obscure light from below that guides the animal. The latter also has a rudimentary reason, a kind of thought, a soul, a will and keen emotions; even though less developed, its psychology is yet the same in kind as man's. But all these capacities in the animal are automatically moved and strictly limited, almost even constituted by the lower nervous being. All animal perceptions, sensibilities, activities are ruled by nervous and vital instincts, cravings, needs, satisfactions, of which the nexus is the life-impulse and vital desire. Man too is bound, but less bound, to this automatism of the vital nature. Man can bring an enlightened will, an enlightened thought and enlightened emotions to the difficult work of his self-development; he can more and more subject to these more conscious and reflecting guides the inferior function of desire. In proportion as he can thus master and enlighten his lower self, he is mall and no longer an animal. When he can begin to replace desire altogether by a still greater enlightened thought and sight and will in touch with the Infinite, consciously subject to a diviner will than his own, linked to a more universal and transcendent knowledge, he has commenced the Ascent towards tile superman; he is on his upward march towards the Divine.
  

1.04_-_The_Sacrifice_the_Triune_Path_and_the_Lord_of_the_Sacrifice, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  All this difficult result can become possible only if there is an immense conversion, a total reversal of our consciousness, a supernormal entire transfiguration of the nature. There must be an ascension of the whole being, an ascension of spirit chained here and trammelled by its instruments and its environment to sheer Spirit free above, an ascension of soul towards some blissful Super-soul, an ascension of mind towards some luminous
  Supermind, an ascension of life towards some vast Super-life, an ascension of our very physicality to join its origin in some pure and plastic spirit-substance. And this cannot be a single swift upsoaring but, like the Ascent of the sacrifice described in the Veda, a climbing from peak to peak in which from each summit one looks up to the much more that has still to be done. At the same time there must be a descent too to affirm below what we have gained above: on each height we conquer we have to turn to bring down its power and its illumination into the lower mortal movement; the discovery of the Light for ever radiant on high must correspond with the release of the same Light secret below in every part down to the deepest caves of subconscient Nature. And this pilgrimage of ascension and this descent for the labour of transformation must be inevitably a battle, a long war with ourselves and with opposing forces around us which, while it lasts, may well seem interminable. For all our old obscure and ignorant nature will contend repeatedly and obstinately with the transforming Influence, supported in its lagging unwillingness or its stark resistance by most of the established forces of environing universal Nature; the powers and principalities and the ruling beings of the Ignorance will not easily give up their empire.
  

1.05_-_The_Ascent_of_the_Sacrifice_-_The_Psychic_Being, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  object:1.05 - the Ascent of the Sacrifice - The Psychic Being
  subject class:Integral Yoga
  --
   CHAPTER V
     the Ascent of the Sacrifice-1
     THE WORKS OF KNOWLEDGE --
  --
     But the most intimate character of the psychic is its pressure towards the Divine through a sacred love, joy and oneness. It is the divine Love that it seeks most, it is the love of the Divine that is its spur, its goal, its star of Truth shining over the luminous cave of the nascent or the still obscure cradle of the new-born godhead within us. In the first long stage of its growth and immature existence it has leaned on earthly love, affection, tenderness, goodwill, compassion, benevolence, on all beauty and gentleness and fineness and light and strength and courage, on all that can help to refine and purify the grossness and commonness of human nature; but it knows how mixed are these human movements at their best and at their worst how fallen and stamped with the mark of ego and self-deceptive sentimental falsehood and the lower self profiting by the imitation of a soul movement. At once, emerging, it is ready and eager to break all the old ties and imperfect emotional activities and replace them by a greater spiritual Truth of love and oneness. It may still admit the human forms and movements, but on condition that they are turned towards the One alone. It accepts only the ties that are helpful, the heart's reverence for the Guru, the union of the God-seekers, a spiritual compassion for the ignorant human and animal world and its peoples, the joy and happiness and satisfaction of beauty that comes from the perception of the Divine everywhere. It plunges the nature inward towards its meeting with the immanent Divine in the heart's secret centre and, while that call is there, no reproach of egoism, no mere outward summons of altruism or duty or philanthropy or service will deceive or divert it from its sacred longing and its obedience to the attraction of the Divinity within it. It lifts the being towards a transcendent Ecstasy and is ready to shed all the downward pull of the world from its wings in its uprising to reach the One Highest; but it calls down also this transcendent Love and Beatitude to deliver and transform this world of hatred and strife and division and darkness and jarring Ignorance. It opens to a universal Divine Love, a vast compassion, an intense and immense will for the good of all, for the embrace of the World-Mother enveloping or gathering to her her children, the divine Passion that has plunged into the night for the redemption of the world from the universal Ignorance. It is not attracted or misled by mental imitations or any vital misuse of these great deep-seated Truths of existence; it exposes them with its detecting search-ray and calls down the entire truth of divine Love to heal these malformations, to deliver mental, vital, physical love from their insufficiencies or their perversions and reveal to them their abounding share of the intimacy and the oneness and the ascending ecstasy and the descending rapture.
     All true truths of Love and of the works of Love the psychic being accepts in their place; but its flame mounts always upward and it is eager to push the Ascent from lesser to higher degrees of Truth, since it knows that only by the Ascent to a highest Truth and the descent of that highest Truth can Love be delivered from the cross and placed upon the throne; for the cross is the sign of the Divine Descent barred and marred by the transversal line of a cosmic deformation which turns life into a state of suffering and misfortune. Only by the Ascent to the original Truth can the deformation be healed and all the works of love, as too all the works of knowledge and of life, be restored to a divine significance and become part of an integral spiritual existence.
  

1.06_-_Man_in_the_Universe, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  1:THE PROGRESSIVE revelation of a great, a transcendent, a luminous Reality with the multitudinous relativities of this world that we see and those other worlds that we do not see as means and material, condition and field, this would seem then to be the meaning of the universe, - since meaning and aim it has and is neither a purposeless illusion nor a fortuitous accident. For the same reasoning which leads us to conclude that world-existence is not a deceptive trick of Mind, justifies equally the certainty that it is no blindly and helplessly self-existent mass of separate phenomenal existences clinging together and struggling together as best they can in their orbit through eternity, no tremendous self-creation and self-impulsion of an ignorant Force without any secret Intelligence within aware of its starting-point and its goal and guiding its process and its motion. An existence, wholly self-aware and therefore entirely master of itself, possesses the phenomenal being in which it is involved, realises itself in form, unfolds itself in the individual.
  2:That luminous Emergence is the dawn which the Aryan forefathers worshipped. Its fulfilled perfection is that highest step of the world-pervading Vishnu which they beheld as if an eye of vision extended in the purest heavens of the Mind. For it exists already as an all-revealing and all-guiding Truth of things which watches over the world and attracts mortal man, first without the knowledge of his conscious mind, by the general march of Nature, but at last consciously by a progressive awakening and self-enlargement, to his divine ascension. the Ascent to the divine Life is the human journey, the Work of works, the acceptable Sacrifice. This alone is man's real business in the world and the justification of his existence, without which he would be only an insect crawling among other ephemeral insects on a speck of surface mud and water which has managed to form itself amid the appalling immensities of the physical universe.
  3:This Truth of things that has to emerge out of the phenomenal world's contradictions is declared to be an infinite Bliss and self-conscious Existence, the same everywhere, in all things, in all times and beyond Time, and aware of itself behind all these phenomena by whose intensest vibrations of activity or by whose largest totality it can never be entirely expressed or in any way limited; for it is self-existent and does not depend for its being upon its manifestations. They represent it, but do not exhaust it; point to it, but do not reveal it. It is revealed only to itself within their forms. The conscious existence involved in the form comes, as it evolves, to know itself by intuition, by self-vision, by self-experience. It becomes itself in the world by knowing itself; it knows itself by becoming itself. Thus possessed of itself inwardly, it imparts also to its forms and modes the conscious delight of Sachchidananda. This becoming of the infinite Bliss-Existence-Consciousness in mind and life and body, - for independent of them it exists eternally, - is the transfiguration intended and the utility of individual existence. Through the individual it manifests in relation even as of itself it exists in identity.
  4:The Unknowable knowing itself as Sachchidananda is the one supreme affirmation of Vedanta; it contains all the others or on it they depend. This is the one veritable experience that remains when all appearances have been accounted for negatively by the elimination of their shapes and coverings or positively by the reduction of their names and forms to the constant truth that they contain. For fulfilment of life or for transcendence of life, and whether purity, calm and freedom in the spirit be our aim or puissance, joy and perfection, Sachchidananda is the unknown, omnipresent, indispensable term for which the human consciousness, whether in knowledge and sentiment or in sensation and action, is eternally seeking.
  5:The universe and the individual are the two essential appearances into which the Unknowable descends and through which it has to be approached; for other intermediate collectivities are born only of their interaction. This descent of the supreme Reality is in its nature a self-concealing; and in the descent there are successive levels, in the concealing successive veils. Necessarily, the revelation takes the form of an ascent; and necessarily also the Ascent and the revelation are both progressive. For each successive level in the descent of the Divine is to man a stage in an ascension; each veil that hides the unknown God becomes for the God-lover and God-seeker an instrument of His unveiling. Out of the rhythmic slumber of material Nature unconscious of the Soul and the Idea that maintain the ordered activities of her energy even in her dumb and mighty material trance, the world struggles into the more quick, varied and disordered rhythm of Life labouring on the verges of self-consciousness. Out of Life it struggles upward into Mind in which the unit becomes awake to itself and its world, and in that awakening the universe gains the leverage it required for its supreme work, it gains self-conscious individuality. But Mind takes up the work to continue, not to complete it. It is a labourer of acute but limited intelligence who takes the confused materials offered by Life and, having improved, adapted, varied, classified according to its power, hands them over to the supreme Artist of our divine manhood. That Artist dwells in supermind; for supermind is superman. Therefore our world has yet to climb beyond Mind to a higher principle, a higher status, a higher dynamism in which universe and individual become aware of and possess that which they both are and therefore stand explained to each other, in harmony with each other, unified.
  6:The disorders of life and mind cease by discerning the secret of a more perfect order than the physical. Matter below life and mind contains in itself the balance between a perfect poise of tranquillity and the action of an immeasurable energy, but does not possess that which it contains. Its peace wears the dull mask of an obscure inertia, a sleep of unconsciousness or rather of a drugged and imprisoned consciousness. Driven by a force which is its real self but whose sense it cannot yet seize nor share, it has not the awakened joy of its own harmonious energies.

1.06_-_Psychic_Education, #On Education, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  When the psychic being begins to be discovered, we find that it burns in the temple of the inmost heart behind the thick screen of the ignorant mind, life and body. As Sri Aurobindo points out:
  "The veiled psychic is the flame of the Godhead always alight within us, inextinguishable even by that dense unconsciousness of any spiritual self within which obscures our outward nature... It is the concealed Witness and Control, the hidden Guide, the Daemon of Socrates, the inner light or inner voice of the mystic... It is the individual soul, caitya purusa, supporting mind, life and body, standing behind the mental, the vital, the subtle-physical being in us and watching and profiting by their development and experience... It is this secret psychic entity which is the true original Conscience in us deeper than the constructed and conventional conscience of the moralist, for it is this which points always towards Truth and Right and Beauty, towards Love and Harmony and all that is a divine possibility in us, and persists till these things become the major need of our nature... If the secret psychic person can come forward into the front... the whole nature can be turned towards the real aim of life, the supreme victory, the Ascent into spiritual existence."2
  

1.06_-_The_Ascent_of_the_Sacrifice_2_The_Works_of_Love_-_The_Works_of_Life, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  object:1.06 - the Ascent of the Sacrifice 2 The Works of Love - The Works of Life
  class:chapter
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  The Works of Love - The Works of Life
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  But all this can only constitute a greater inner life with a greater possibility of the outer action and is a transitional achievement; the full transformation can come only by the Ascent of the sacrifice to its farthest heights and its action upon life with the power and light and beatitude of the divine supramental
  Gnosis. For then alone all the forces that are divided and express themselves imperfectly in life and its works are raised to their original unity, harmony, single truth, authentic absoluteness and entire significance. There Knowledge and Will are one, Love and
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  
  --
  
  the Ascent of the Sacrifice - 2
  

1.07_-_The_Continuity_of_Consciousness, #Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, #Rudolf Steiner, #Occultism
   p. 203
   first, dreams are only regarded as a particular manifestation of sleep-life, and thus only two states are generally spoken of, namely, sleeping and waking. For spiritual science, however, dreams have an independent significance apart from the other two conditions. In the foregoing chapter a description was given of the alteration ensuing in the dream-life of the person undertaking the Ascent to higher knowledge. His dreams lose their meaningless, irregular and disconnected character and form themselves more and more into a world of law and order. With continued development, not only does this new world born out of the dream world come to be in no way inferior to outer physical reality as regards its inner truth, but facts reveal themselves in it representing a higher reality in the fullest sense of the word. Secrets and riddles lie concealed everywhere in the physical world. In the latter, the effects are seen of certain higher facts, but no one can penetrate to the causes whose perception is confined merely to his senses. These causes are partly revealed to the student in the condition described above and developed out of dream life, a condition, however, in which he by no means remains
   p. 204

1.08_-_The_Splitting_of_the_Human_Personality_during_Spiritual_Training, #Knowledge of the Higher Worlds, #Rudolf Steiner, #Occultism
  
  It is for this reason that so much is found in books dealing with these matters concerning the dangers connected with the Ascent into higher worlds. The descriptions sometimes given of these dangers may well make timid souls shudder at the prospect of this higher life. Yet the fact is that dangers only arise when the necessary precautions are neglected. If all the measures counseled by true esoteric science are adopted, the Ascent will indeed ensue through experiences surpassing in power and magnitude everything the boldest flights of sense-bound fantasy can picture; and yet there can be no question of injury to health or life. The student meets with horrible powers threatening life at every turn and from every side. It will even be possible for him to make use of certain forces and beings existing beyond physical perception, and the temptation is great to control these forces for the furtherance of personal and forbidden interests, or to employ them wrongly out of a deficient knowledge of the higher worlds. Some of
   p. 219

1.08_-_The_Supreme_Will, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  author class:Sri Aurobindo
  1:IN THE light of this progressive manifestation of the Spirit, first apparently bound in the Ignorance, then free in the power and wisdom of the Infinite, we can better understand the great and crowning injunction of the Gita to the Karmayogin, "Abandoning all dharmas, all principles and laws and rules of conduct, take refuge in me alone." All standards and rules are temporary constructions founded upon the needs of the ego in its transition from Matter to Spirit. These makeshifts have a relative imperativeness so long as we rest satisfied in the stages of transition, content with the physical and vital life, attached to the mental movement, or even fixed in the ranges of the mental plane that are touched by the spiritual lustres. But beyond is the unwalled wideness of a supramental infinite consciousness and there all temporary structures cease. It is not possible to enter utterly into the spiritual truth of the Eternal and Infinite if we have not the faith and courage to trust ourselves into the hands of the Lord of all things and the Friend of all creatures and leave utterly behind us our mental limits and measures. At one moment we must plunge without hesitation, reserve, fear or scruple into the ocean of the free, the infinite, the Absolute. After the Law, Liberty; after the personal, after the general, after the universal standards there is something greater, the impersonal plasticity, the divine freedom, the transcendent force and the supernal impulse. After the strait path of the Ascent the wide plateaus on the summit.
  2:There are three stages of the Ascent, - at the bottom the bodily life enslaved to the pressure of necessity and desire, in the middle the mental, higher emotional and psychic rule that feels after greater interests, aspirations, experiences, at the summits first a deeper psychic and spiritual state and then a supramental eternal consciousness in which all our aspirations and seekings discover their own intimate significance. In the bodily life first desire and need and then the practical good of the individual and the society are the governing consideration, the dominant force. In the mental life ideas and ideals rule, ideas that are halflights wearing the garb of Truth, ideals formed by the mind as a result of a growing but still imperfect intuition and experience. Whenever the mental life prevails and the bodily diminishes its brute insistence, man the mental being feels pushed by the urge of mental Nature to mould in the sense of the idea or the ideal the life of the individual, and in the end even the vaguer more complex life of the society is forced to undergo this subtle process. In the spiritual life, or when a higher power than Mind has manifested and taken possession of the nature, these limited motive-forces recede, dwindle, tend to disappear. The spiritual or supramental Self, the Divine Being, the supreme and immanent Reality, must be alone the Lord within us and shape freely our final development according to the highest, widest, most integral expression possible of the law of our nature. In the end that nature acts in the perfect Truth and its spontaneous freedom; for it obeys only the luminous power of the Eternal. The individual has nothing further to gain, no desire to fulfil; he has become a portion of the impersonality or the universal personality of the Eternal. No other object than the manifestation and play of the Divine Spirit in life and the maintenance and conduct of the world in its march towards the divine goal can move him to action. Mental ideas, opinions, constructions are his no more; for his mind has fallen into silence, it is only a channel for the Light and Truth of the divine knowledge. Ideals are too narrow for the vastness of his spirit; it is the ocean of the Infinite that flows through him and moves him for ever.
  3:Whoever sincerely enters the path of works, must leave behind him the stage in which need and desire are the first law of our acts. For whatever desires still trouble his being, he must, if he accepts the high aim of Yoga, put them away from him into the hands of the Lord within us. The supreme Power will deal with them for the good of the sadhaka and for the good of all. In effect, we find that once this surrender is done, - always provided the rejection is sincere, - egoistic indulgence of desire may for some time recur under the continued impulse of past nature but only in order to exhaust its acquired momentum and to teach the embodied being in his most unteachable part, his nervous, vital, emotional nature, by the reactions of desire, by its grief and unrest bitterly contrasted with calm periods of the higher peace or marvellous movements of divine Ananda, that egoistic desire is not a law for the soul that seeks liberation or aspires to its own original god-nature. Afterwards the element of desire in those impulsions will be thrown away or persistently eliminated by a constant denying and transforming pressure. Only the pure force of action in them (pravr.tti) justified by an equal delight in all work and result that is inspired or imposed from above will be preserved in the happy harmony of a final perfection. To act, to enjoy is the normal law and right of the nervous being; but to choose by personal desire its action and enjoyment is only its ignorant will, not its right. Alone the supreme and universal Will must choose; action must change into a dynamic movement of that Will; enjoyment must be replaced by the play of a pure spiritual Ananda. All personal will is either a temporary delegation from on high or a usurpation by the ignorant Asura.

11.01_-_The_Eternal_Day_The_Souls_Choice_and_the_Supreme_Consummation, #Savitri, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Then on what seemed one crown of the Ascent
  Where finite and the infinite are one,
  --
  Like an upsoaring bird who mounts unseen
  Voicing to the Ascent his throbbing heart
  Of melody till a pause of closing wings

1.11_-_The_Master_of_the_Work, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
     A Transcendent who is beyond all world and all Nature and yet possesses the world and its nature, who has descended with something of himself into it and is shaping it into that which as yet it is not, is the Source of our being, the Source of our works and their Master. But the seat of the Transcendent Consciousness is above in an absoluteness of divine Existence -- and there too is the absolute Power, Truth, Bliss of the Eternal -- of which our mentality can form no conception and of which even our greatest spiritual experience is only a diminished reflection in the spiritualised mind and heart, a faint shadow, a thin derivate. Yet proceeding from it there is a sort of golden corona of Light, Power, Bliss and Truth -- a divine Truth-Consciousness as the ancient mystics called it, a supermind, a Gnosis, with which this world of a lesser consciousness proceeding by Ignorance is in secret relation and which alone maintains it and prevents it from falling into a disintegrated chaos. The powers we are now satisfied to call gnosis, intuition or illumination are only fainter lights of which that is the full and flaming source, and between the highest human intelligence and it there lie many levels of ascending consciousness, highest mental or overmental, which we would have to conquer before we arrived there or could bring down its greatness and glory here. Yet, however difficult, that ascent, that victory is the destiny of the human spirit and that luminous descent or bringing down of the divine Truth is the inevitable term of the troubled evolution of the earth-nature; that intended consummation is its raison d'etre, our culminating state and the explanation of our terrestrial existence. For though the Transcendental Divine is already here as the Purushottama in the secret heart of our mystery, he is veiled by many coats and disguises of his magic world-wide Yoga-Maya; it is only by the Ascent and victory of the Soul here in the body that the disguises can fall away and the dynamis of the supreme Truth replace this tangled weft of half-truth that becomes creative error, this emergent Knowledge that is converted by its plunge into the inconscience of Matter and its slow partial return towards itself into an effective Ignorance.
     For here in the world, though the gnosis is there secretly behind existence, what acts is not the gnosis but a magic of Knowledge-Ignorance, an incalculable yet apparently mechanical overmind Maya. The Divine appears to us here in one view as an equal, inactive and impersonal Witness Spirit, an immobile consenting Purusha not bound by quality or Space or Time, whose support or sanction is given impartially to the play of all action and energies which the transcendent Will has once permitted and authorised to fulfil themselves in the cosmos. This Witness Spirit, this immobile Self in things, seems to will nothing and determine nothing; yet we become aware that his very passivity, his silent presence compels all things to travel even in their ignorance towards a divine goal and attracts through division towards a yet unrealised oneness. Yet no supreme infallible Divine Will seems to be there, only a widely deployed Cosmic Energy of a mechanical executive Process, prakriti. This is one side of the cosmic Self; the other presents itself as a universal Divine, one in being, multiple in personality and power, who conveys to us, when we enter into the consciousness of his universal forces, a sense of infinite quality and will and act and a world-wide knowledge and a one yet innumerable delight; for through him we become one with all existences not only in their essence but in their play of action, see ourself in all and all in ourself, perceive all knowledge and thought and feeling as motions of the one Mind and Heart, all energy and action as kinetics of the one Will m power, all Matter and form as particles of the one Body, all personalities as projections of the one Person, all egos as deformations of the one and sole real "I" in existence. In him we no longer stand separate, but lose our active ego in the universal movement, even as by the Witness who is without qualities and for ever unattached and unentangled, we lose our static ego in the universal peace.
  --
     But none of these achievements is enough for one who seeks the wide completeness of an integral Yoga. An individual salvation is not enough for him; for he finds himself opening to a cosmic consciousness which far exceeds by its breadth and vastness the narrower intensity of a limited individual fulfilment, and its call is imperative; driven by that immense compulsion, he must break through all separative boundaries, spread himself in world-Nature, contain the universe. Above too, there is urgent upon him a dynamic realisation pressing from the Supreme upon this world of beings, and only some encompassing and exceeding of the cosmic consciousness can release into manifestation here that yet unlavished splendour. But the cosmic consciousness too is not sufficient; for it is not all the Divine Reality, not integral. There is a divine secret behind personality that he must discover; there, waiting in it to be delivered here into Time, stands the mystery of the embodiment of the Transcendence. In the cosmic consciousness there remains at the end a hiatus, an unequal equation of a highest Knowledge that can liberate but not effectuate with a Power seeming to use a limited Knowledge or masking itself with a surface Ignorance that can create but creates imperfection or a perfection transient, limited and in fetters. On one side there is a free undynamic Witness and on the other side a bound Executrix of action who has not been given all the means of action. The reconciliation of these companions and opposites seems to be reserved, postponed, held back in an Unmanifest still beyond us. But, again, a mere escape into some absolute Transcendence leaves personality unfulfilled and the universal action inconclusive and cannot satisfy the integral seeker. He feels that the Truth that is for ever is a Power that creates as well as a stable Existence; it is not a Power solely of illusory or ignorant manifestation. The eternal Truth can manifest its truths in Time; it can create in Knowledge and not only in Inconscience and Ignorance. A divine Descent no less than an ascent to the Divine is possible; there is a prospect of the bringing down of a future perfection and a present deliverance. As his knowledge widens, it becomes for him more and more evident that it was this for which the Master of Works cast down the soul within him here as a spark of his fire into the darkness, that it might grow there into a centre of the Light that is for ever.
     The Transcendent, the Universal, the Individual are three powers overarching, underlying and penetrating the whole manifestation; this is the first of the Trinities. In the unfolding of consciousness also, these are the three fundamental terms and none of them can be neglected if we would have the experience of the whole Truth of existence. Out of the individual we wake into a vaster freer cosmic consciousness; but out of the universal too with its complex of forms and powers we must emerge by a still greater self-exceeding into a consciousness without limits that is founded on the Absolute. And yet in this ascension we do not really abolish but take up and transfigure what we seem to leave; for there is a height where the three live eternally in each other, on that height they are blissfully joined in a nodus of their harmonised oneness. But that summit is above the highest and largest spiritualised mentality, even if some reflection of it can be experienced there; mind, to attain to it, to live there, must exceed itself and be transformed into a supramental gnostic light, power and substance. In this lower diminished consciousness a harmony can indeed be attempted, but it must always remain imperfect: a co-ordination is possible, not a simultaneous fused fulfilment. An ascent out of the mind is, for any greater realisation, imperative. Or else, there must be, with the Ascent or consequent to it, a dynamic descent of the self-existent Truth that exists always uplifted ill its own light above Mind, eternal, prior to the manifestation of Life and Matter.
     For Mind is Maya, sat-asat: there is a field of embrace of the true and the false, the existent and the non-existent, and it is in that ambiguous field that Mind seems to reign; but even in its own reign it is in truth a diminished consciousness, it is not part of the original and supremely originating power of the Eternal. Even if Mind is able to reflect some image of essential Truth in its substance, yet the dynamic force and action of Truth appears in it always broken and divided. All Mind can do is to piece together the fragments or deduce a unity; truth of Mind is only a half-truth or a portion of a puzzle. Mental knowledge is always relative, partial and inconclusive, and its outgoing action and creation come out still more confused in its steps or precise only in narrow limits and by imperfect piecings together. Even in this diminished consciousness the Divine manifests as a Spirit in Mind, just as he moves as a Spirit in Life or dwells still more obscurely as a Spirit in Matter; but not here is his full dynamic revelation, not here the perfect identities of the Eternal. Only when we cross the border into a larger luminous consciousness and self-aware substance where divine Truth is a native and not a stranger, will there be revealed to us the Master of our existence in the imperishable integral truth of his being and his powers and his workings. Only there, too, will his works in us assume the flawless movement of his unfailing supramental purpose.

1.11_-_The_Seven_Rivers, #The Secret Of The Veda, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  The rest of the passage describes the Ascent of this divine conscious-force, Agni, this Immortal in mortals who in the sacrifice takes the place of the ordinary will and knowledge of man, from the mortal and physical consciousness to the immortality of the Truth and the Beatitude. The Vedic Rishis speak of five births for man, five worlds of creatures where works are done, panca janah., panca kr.s.t.h. or ks.ith.. Dyaus and Prithivi represent the pure mental and the physical consciousness; between them is the Antariksha, the intermediate or connecting level of the vital or nervous consciousness. Dyaus and Prithivi are Rodasi, our two firmaments; but these have to be overpassed, for then we find admission to another heaven than that of the pure mind - to the wide, the Vast which is the basis, the foundation (budhna) of the infinite consciousness, Aditi. This Vast is the Truth which supports the supreme triple world, those highest steps or seats
  (padani, sadamsi) of Agni, of Vishnu, those supreme Names of the Mother, the cow, Aditi. The Vast or Truth is declared to be

1.1.2_-_Commentary, #Kena and Other Upanishads, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  great ascent which the Upanishad opens to us.
  The goal of the Ascent is the world of the true and vast
  existence of which the Veda speaks as the Truth that is the final

1.13_-_The_Divine_Maya, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  9:This power was known to the Vedic seers by the name of Maya. Maya meant for them the power of infinite consciousness to comprehend, contain in itself and measure out, that is to say, to form - for form is delimitation - Name and Shape out of the vast illimitable Truth of infinite existence. It is by Maya that static truth of essential being becomes ordered truth of active being - or, to put it in more metaphysical language, out of the supreme being in which all is all without barrier of separative consciousness emerges the phenomenal being in which all is in each and each is in all for the play of existence with existence, consciousness with consciousness, force with force, delight with delight. This play of all in each and each in all is concealed at first from us by the mental play or the illusion of Maya which persuades each that he is in all but not all in him and that he is in all as a separated being not as a being always inseparably one with the rest of existence. Afterwards we have to emerge from this error into the supramental play or the truth of Maya where the "each" and the "all" coexist in the inseparable unity of the one truth and the multiple symbol. The lower, present and deluding mental Maya has first to be embraced, then to be overcome; for it is God's play with division and darkness and limitation, desire and strife and suffering in which He subjects Himself to the Force that has come out of Himself and by her obscure suffers Himself to be obscured. That other Maya concealed by this mental has to be overpassed, then embraced; for it is God's play of the infinities of existence, the splendours of knowledge, the glories of force mastered and the ecstasies of love illimitable where He emerges out of the hold of Force, holds her instead and fulfils in her illumined that for which she went out from Him at the first.
  10:This distinction between the lower and the higher Maya is the link in thought and in cosmic Fact which the pessimistic and illusionist philosophies miss or neglect. To them the mental Maya, or perhaps an Overmind, is the creatrix of the world, and a world created by mental Maya would indeed be an inexplicable paradox and a fixed yet floating nightmare of conscious existence which could neither be classed as an illusion nor as a reality. We have to see that the mind is only an intermediate term between the creative governing knowledge and the soul imprisoned in its works. Sachchidananda, involved by one of His lower movements in the self-oblivious absorption of Force that is lost in the form of her own workings, returns towards Himself out of the self-oblivion; Mind is only one of His instruments in the descent and the Ascent. It is an instrument of the descending creation, not the secret creatrix, - a transitional stage in the Ascent, not our high original source and the consummate term of cosmic existence.
  11:The philosophies which recognise Mind alone as the creator of the worlds or accept an original principle with Mind as the only mediator between it and the forms of the universe, may be divided into the purely noumenal and the idealistic. The purely noumenal recognise in the cosmos only the work of Mind, Thought, Idea: but Idea may be purely arbitrary and have no essential relation to any real Truth of existence; such Truth, if it exists, may be regarded as a mere Absolute aloof from all relations and irreconcilable with a world of relations. The idealistic interpretation supposes a relation between the Truth behind and the conceptive phenomenon in front, a relation which is not merely that of an antinomy and opposition. The view I am presenting goes farther in idealism; it sees the creative Idea as Real-Idea, that is to say, a power of Conscious Force expressive of real being, born out of real being and partaking of its nature and neither a child of the Void nor a weaver of fictions. It is conscious Reality throwing itself into mutable forms of its own imperishable and immutable substance. The world is therefore not a figment of conception in the universal Mind, but a conscious birth of that which is beyond Mind into forms of itself. A Truth of conscious being supports these forms and expresses itself in them, and the knowledge corresponding to the truth thus expressed reigns as a supramental Truth-consciousness organising real ideas in a perfect harmony before they are cast into the mental-vital-material mould. Mind, Life and Body are an inferior consciousness and a partial expression which strives to arrive in the mould of a various evolution at that superior expression of itself already existent to the Beyond-Mind. That which is in the Beyond-Mind is the ideal which in its own conditions it is labouring to realise.

1.16_-_The_Process_of_Avatarhood, #Essays On The Gita, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  For this greatest union, this highest becoming is still part of the Ascent; while it is the divine birth to which every Jiva arrives, it is not the descent of the Godhead, not Avatarhood, but at most
  Buddhahood according to the doctrine of the Buddhists, it is the soul awakened from its present mundane individuality into an infinite superconsciousness. That need not carry with it either the inner consciousness or the characteristic action of the Avatar.

1.19_-_Equality, #Essays On The Gita, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Ask it to rise out of all this disturbance to the unmingled joy of the pure bliss-soul which all the time secretly supports its strength in the struggle and makes its own continued existence possible, - it will draw back at once from the call. It does not believe in such an existence; or it believes that it would not be life, that it would not be at all the varied existence in the world around it in which it is accustomed to take pleasure; it would be something tasteless and without savour. Or it feels that the effort would be too difficult for it; it recoils from the struggle of the Ascent, although in reality the spiritual change is not at all more difficult than the realisation of the dreams the desire-soul pursues, nor entails more struggle and labour in the attainment than the tremendous effort which the desire-soul expends in its passionate chase after its own transient objects of pleasure and desire. The true cause of its unwillingness is that it is asked to rise above its own atmosphere and breathe a rarer and purer air of life, whose bliss and power it cannot realise and hardly even conceives as real, while the joy of this lower turbid nature is to it the one thing familiar and palpable. Nor is this lower satisfaction in itself a thing evil and unprofitable; it is rather the condition for the upward evolution of our human nature out of the tamasic ignorance and inertia to which its material being is most subject; it is the rajasic stage of the graded ascent of man towards the supreme self-knowledge, power and bliss. But if we rest eternally on this plane, the madhyama gatih. of the Gita, our ascent remains unfinished, the evolution of the soul incomplete.
  
  --
  But the Gita accepts this Stoic discipline, this heroic philosophy, on the same condition that it accepts the tamasic recoil,
  - it must have above it the sattwic vision of knowledge, at its root the aim at self-realisation and in its steps the Ascent to the divine Nature. A Stoic discipline which merely crushed down the common affections of our human nature, - although less dangerous than a tamasic weariness of life, unfruitful pessimism and sterile inertia, because it would at least increase the power and self-mastery of the soul, - would still be no unmixed good, since it might lead to insensibility and an inhuman isolation without giving the true spiritual release. The Stoic equality is justified as an element in the discipline of the Gita because it can be associated with and can help to the realisation of the free immutable Self in the mobile human being, param dr.s.t.va, and to status in that new self-consciousness, es.a brahm sthitih..
  

1.20_-_The_Hound_of_Heaven, #The Secret Of The Veda, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  So runs this hymn of Parashara, translated with the utmost possible literalness even at the cost of some uncouthness in the
  English. It is clear at the very first glance that it is throughout a hymn of knowledge, of the Truth, of a divine Flame which is hardly distinguishable from the supreme Deity, of immortality, of the Ascent of the gods, the divine powers, by the sacrifice to their godhead, to their supreme names, to their proper forms, to
  
  --
  The Secret of the Veda
   the shining glory of the supreme state with its thrice seven seats of the Godhead. Such an ascent can have no other meaning than the Ascent of the divine powers in man out of their ordinary cosmic appearances to the shining Truth beyond, as indeed
  Parashara himself tells us that by this action of the gods mortal man awakens to the knowledge and finds Agni standing in the supreme seat and goal; vidan marto nemadhita cikitvan, agnim pade parame tasthivamsam. What is Sarama doing in such a hymn if she is not a power of the Truth, if her cows are not the rays of a divine dawn of illumination? What have the cows of old warring tribes and the sanguinary squabbles of our Aryan and

1.21_-_The_Ascent_of_Life, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  object:1.21 - the Ascent of Life
  class:chapter

1.23_-_The_Double_Soul_in_Man, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  He who has found the bliss of the Eternal has no fear from any quarter. Taittiriya Upanishad.5
  1:THE FIRST status of Life we found to be characterised by a dumb inconscient drive or urge, a force of some involved will in the material or atomic existence, not free and possessor of itself or its works or their results, but entirely possessed by the universal movement in which it arises as the obscure unformed seed of individuality. The root of the second status is desire, eager to possess but limited in capacity; the bud of the third is Love which seeks both to possess and be possessed, to receive and to give itself; the fine flower of the fourth, its sign of perfection, we conceive as the pure and full emergence of the original will, the illumined fulfilment of the intermediate desire, the high and deep satisfaction of the conscious interchange of Love by the unification of the state of the possessor and possessed in the divine unity of souls which is the foundation of the supramental existence. If we scrutinise these terms carefully we shall see that they are shapes and stages of the soul's seeking for the individual and universal delight of things; the Ascent of Life is in its nature the Ascent of the divine Delight in things from its dumb conception in Matter through vicissitudes and opposites to its luminous consummation in Spirit.
  2:The world being what it is, it could not be otherwise. For the world is a masked form of Sachchidananda, and the nature of the consciousness of Sachchidananda and therefore the thing in which His force must always find and achieve itself is divine Bliss, an omnipresent self-delight. Since Life is an energy of His conscious-force, the secret of all its movements must be a hidden delight inherent in all things which is at once cause, motive and object of its activities; and if by reason of egoistic division that delight is missed, if it is held back behind a veil, if it is represented as its own opposite, even as being is masked in death, consciousness figures as the inconscient and force mocks itself with the guise of incapacity, then that which lives cannot be satisfied, cannot either rest from the movement or fulfil the movement except by laying hold on this universal delight which is at once the secret total delight of its own being and the original, all-encompassing, all-informing, all-upholding delight of the transcendent and immanent Sachchidananda. To seek for delight is therefore the fundamental impulse and sense of Life; to find and possess and fulfil it is its whole motive.
  --
  9:In the view of old philosophies pleasure and pain are inseparable like intellectual truth and falsehood and power and incapacity and birth and death; therefore the only possible escape from them would be a total indifference, a blank response to the excitations of the world-self. But a subtler psychological knowledge shows us that this view which is based on the surface facts of existence only, does not really exhaust the possibilities of the problem. It is possible by bringing the real soul to the surface to replace the egoistic standards of pleasure and pain by an equal, an all-embracing personal-impersonal delight. The lover of Nature does this when he takes joy in all the things of Nature universally without admitting repulsion or fear or mere liking and disliking, perceiving beauty in that which seems to others mean and insignificant, bare and savage, terrible and repellent. The artist and the poet do it when they seek the rasa of the universal from the aesthetic emotion or from the physical line or from the mental form of beauty or from the inner sense and power alike of that from which the ordinary man turns away and of that to which he is attached by a sense of pleasure. The seeker of knowledge, the God-lover who finds the object of his love everywhere, the spiritual man, the intellectual, the sensuous, the aesthetic all do this in their own fashion and must do it if they would find embracingly the Knowledge, the Beauty, the Joy or the Divinity which they seek. It is only in the parts where the little ego is usually too strong for us, it is only in our emotional or physical joy and suffering, our pleasure and pain of life, before which the desire-soul in us is utterly weak and cowardly, that the application of the divine principle becomes supremely difficult and seems to many impossible or even monstrous and repellent. Here the ignorance of the ego shrinks from the principle of impersonality which it yet applies without too much difficulty in Science, in Art and even in a certain kind of imperfect spiritual living because there the rule of impersonality does not attack those desires cherished by the surface soul and those values of desire fixed by the surface mind in which our outward life is most vitally interested. In the freer and higher movements there is demanded of us only a limited and specialised equality and impersonality proper to a particular field of consciousness and activity while the egoistic basis of our practical life remains to us; in the lower movements the whole foundation of our life has to be changed in order to make room for impersonality, and this the desire-soul finds impossible.
  10:The true soul secret in us - subliminal, we have said, but the word is misleading, for this presence is not situated below the threshold of waking mind, but rather burns in the temple of the inmost heart behind the thick screen of an ignorant mind, life and body, not subliminal but behind the veil, - this veiled psychic entity is the flame of the Godhead always alight within us, inextinguishable even by that dense unconsciousness of any spiritual self within which obscures our outward nature. It is a flame born out of the Divine and, luminous inhabitant of the Ignorance, grows in it till it is able to turn it towards the Knowledge. It is the concealed Witness and Control, the hidden Guide, the Daemon of Socrates, the inner light or inner voice of the mystic. It is that which endures and is imperishable in us from birth to birth, untouched by death, decay or corruption, an indestructible spark of the Divine. Not the unborn Self or Atman, for the Self even in presiding over the existence of the individual is aware always of its universality and transcendence, it is yet its deputy in the forms of Nature, the individual soul, caitya purus.a, supporting mind, life and body, standing behind the mental, the vital, the subtle-physical being in us and watching and profiting by their development and experience. These other person-powers in man, these beings of his being, are also veiled in their true entity, but they put forward temporary personalities which compose our outer individuality and whose combined superficial action and appearance of status we call ourselves: this inmost entity also, taking form in us as the psychic Person, puts forward a psychic personality which changes, grows, develops from life to life; for this is the traveller between birth and death and between death and birth, our nature parts are only its manifold and changing vesture. The psychic being can at first exercise only a concealed and partial and indirect action through the mind, the life and the body, since it is these parts of Nature that have to be developed as its instruments of self-expression, and it is long confined by their evolution. Missioned to lead man in the Ignorance towards the light of the Divine Consciousness, it takes the essence of all experience in the Ignorance to form a nucleus of soul-growth in the nature; the rest it turns into material for the future growth of the instruments which it has to use until they are ready to be a luminous instrumentation of the Divine. It is this secret psychic entity which is the true original Conscience in us deeper than the constructed and conventional conscience of the moralist, for it is this which points always towards Truth and Right and Beauty, towards Love and Harmony and all that is a divine possibility in us, and persists till these things become the major need of our nature. It is the psychic personality in us that flowers as the saint, the sage, the seer; when it reaches its full strength, it turns the being towards the Knowledge of Self and the Divine, towards the supreme Truth, the supreme Good, the supreme Beauty, Love and Bliss, the divine heights and largenesses, and opens us to the touch of spiritual sympathy, universality, oneness. On the contrary, where the psychic personality is weak, crude or ill-developed, the finer parts and movements in us are lacking or poor in character and power, even though the mind may be forceful and brilliant, the heart of vital emotions hard and strong and masterful, the life-force dominant and successful, the bodily existence rich and fortunate and an apparent lord and victor. It is then the outer desire-soul, the pseudo-psychic entity, that reigns and we mistake its misinterpretations of psychic suggestion and aspiration, its ideas and ideals, its desires and yearnings for true soul-stuff and wealth of spiritual experience.7 If the secret psychic Person can come forward into the front and, replacing the desire-soul, govern overtly and entirely and not only partially and from behind the veil this outer nature of mind, life and body, then these can be cast into soul images of what is true, right and beautiful and in the end the whole nature can be turned towards the real aim of life, the supreme victory, the Ascent into spiritual existence.
  11:But it might seem then that by bringing this psychic entity, this true soul in us, into the front and giving it there the lead and rule we shall gain all the fulfilment of our natural being that we can seek for and open also the gates of the kingdom of the Spirit. And it might well be reasoned that there is no need for any intervention of a superior Truth-Consciousness or principle of Supermind to help us to attain to the divine status or the divine perfection. Yet, although the psychic transformation is one necessary condition of the total transformation of our existence, it is not all that is needed for the largest spiritual change. In the first place, since this is the individual soul in Nature, it can open to the hidden diviner ranges of our being and receive and reflect their light and power and experience, but another, a spiritual transformation from above is needed for us to possess our self in its universality and transcendence. By itself the psychic being at a certain stage might be content to create a formation of truth, good and beauty and make that its station; at a farther stage it might become passively subject to the worldself, a mirror of the universal existence, consciousness, power, delight, but not their full participant or possessor. Although more nearly and thrillingly united to the cosmic consciousness in knowledge, emotion and even appreciation through the senses, it might become purely recipient and passive, remote from mastery and action in the world; or, one with the static self behind the cosmos, but separate inwardly from the world-movement, losing its individuality in its Source, it might return to that Source and have neither the will nor the power any further for that which was its ultimate mission here, to lead the nature also towards its divine realisation. For the psychic being came into Nature from the Self, the Divine, and it can turn back from Nature to the silent Divine through the silence of the Self and a supreme spiritual immobility. Again, an eternal portion of the Divine,8 this part is by the law of the Infinite inseparable from its Divine Whole, this part is indeed itself that Whole, except in its frontal appearance, its frontal separative self-experience; it may awaken to that reality and plunge into it to the apparent extinction or at least the merging of the individual existence. A small nucleus here in the mass of our ignorant Nature, so that it is described in the Upanishad as no bigger than a man's thumb, it can by the spiritual influx enlarge itself and embrace the whole world with the heart and mind in an intimate communion or oneness. Or it may become aware of its eternal Companion and elect to live for ever in His presence, in an imperishable union and oneness as the eternal lover with the eternal Beloved, which of all spiritual experiences is the most intense in beauty and rapture. All these are great and splendid achievements of our spiritual self-finding, but they are not necessarily the last end and entire consummation; more is possible.

1.24_-_The_Seventh_Bolgia_-_Thieves._Vanni_Fucci._Serpents., #The Divine Comedy, #Dante Alighieri, #Christianity
    And had it not been, that upon that precinct
    Shorter was the Ascent than on the other,
    He I know not, but I had been dead beat.

1.26_-_The_Ascending_Series_of_Substance, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  10:But how does this ascending series affect the possibilities of our material existence? It would not affect them at all if each plane of consciousness, each world of existence, each grade of substance, each degree of cosmic force were cut off entirely from that which precedes and that which follows it. But the opposite is the truth; the manifestation of the Spirit is a complex weft and in the design and pattern of one principle all the others enter as elements of the spiritual whole. Our material world is the result of all the others, for the other principles have all descended into Matter to create the physical universe, and every particle of what we call Matter contains all of them implicit in itself; their secret action, as we have seen, is involved in every moment of its existence and every movement of its activity. And as Matter is the last word of the descent, so it is also the first word of the Ascent; as the powers of all these planes, worlds, grades, degrees are involved in the material existence, so are they all capable of evolution out of it. It is for this reason that material being does not begin and end with gases and chemical compounds and physical forces and movements, with nebulae and suns and earths, but evolves life, evolves mind, must evolve eventually supermind and the higher degrees of the spiritual existence. Evolution comes by the unceasing pressure of the supra-material planes on the material compelling it to deliver out of itself their principles and powers which might conceivably otherwise have slept imprisoned in the rigidity of the material formula. This would even so have been improbable, since their presence there implies a purpose of deliverance; but still this necessity from below is actually very much aided by a kindred superior pressure.
  
  --
  
  14:So it should rationally be; for the uninterrupted series of the principles of our being and their close mutual connection is too evident for it to be possible that one of them should be condemned and cut off while the others are capable of a divine liberation. the Ascent of man from the physical to the supramental must open out the possibility of a corresponding ascent in the grades of substance to that ideal or causal body which is proper to our supramental being, and the conquest of the lower principles by supermind and its liberation of them into a divine life and a divine mentality must also render possible a conquest of our physical limitations by the power and principle of supramental substance. And this means the evolution not only of an untrammelled consciousness, a mind and sense not shut up in the walls of the physical ego or limited to the poor basis of knowledge given by the physical organs of sense, but a lifepower liberated more and more from its mortal limitations, a physical life fit for a divine inhabitant and, - in the sense not of attachment or of restriction to our present corporeal frame but an exceeding of the law of the physical body, - the conquest of death, an earthly immortality. For from the divine Bliss, the original Delight of existence, the Lord of Immortality comes pouring the wine of that Bliss, the mystic Soma, into these jars of mentalised living matter; eternal and beautiful, he enters into these sheaths of substance for the integral transformation of the being and nature.
  

1.34_-_Fourth_Division_of_the_Ninth_Circle,_the_Judecca_Traitors_to_their_Lords_and_Benefactors._Lucifer,_Judas_Iscariot,_Brutus,_and_Cassius._The_Chasm_of_Lethe._The_Ascent., #The Divine Comedy, #Dante Alighieri, #Christianity
  object:1.34 - Fourth Division of the Ninth Circle, the Judecca Traitors to their Lords and Benefactors. Lucifer, Judas Iscariot, Brutus, and Cassius. The Chasm of Lethe. the Ascent.
  "'Vexilla Regis prodeunt Inferni'

1.3.5.05_-_The_Path, #Essays Divine And Human, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  the Ascent can only be achieved by a one-centred allgathering upward aspiration of the soul and mind and life and body; the descent can only come by a call of the whole being towards the infinite and eternal Divine. If this call and this aspiration are there, or if by any means they can be born and grow constantly and seize all the nature, then and then only a supramental uplifting and transformation becomes possible.
  

2.01_-_The_Path, #Words Of The Mother II, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  *
  Life is a perpetual choice between truth and falsehood, light and darkness, progress and regression, the Ascent towards the heights or a fall into the abyss. It is for each one to choose freely.
  

2.02_-_The_Status_of_Knowledge, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  That status of knowledge is then the aim of this path and indeed of all paths when pursued to their end, to which intellectual discrimination and conception and all concentration and psychological self-knowledge and all seeking by the heart through love and by the senses through beauty and by the will through power and works and by the soul through peace and joy are only keys, avenues, first approaches and beginnings of the Ascent which we have to use and to follow till the wide and infinite levels are attained and the divine doors swing open into the infinite Light.
  

2.07_-_The_Supreme_Word_of_the_Gita, #Essays On The Gita, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  E HAVE now got to the inmost kernel of the Gita's
  Yoga, the whole living and breathing centre of its teaching. We can see now quite clearly that the Ascent of the limited human soul when it withdraws from the ego and the lower nature into the immutable Self calm, silent and stable, was only a first step, an initial change. And now too we can see why the Gita from the first insisted on the Ishwara, the
  Godhead in the human form, who speaks always of himself,

2.07_-_The_Upanishad_in_Aphorism, #Isha Upanishad, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Matter is the lowest rung of the ladder and the soul that has descended into Matter tends by its secret nature & inevitable self-impulsion to reemerge out of form towards the freedom of pure universal being. These are the two movements that govern world-existence, adhogati, the descent towards matter or mere form and urdhwagati, the Ascent towards Spirit and God.
  

2.1.02_-_Classification_of_the_Parts_of_the_Being, #Letters On Yoga I, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  There are in fact two systems simultaneously active in the organisation of the being and its parts; - one is concentric, a series of rings or sheaths with the psychic at the centre; another is vertical, an ascension and descent, like a flight of steps, a series of superimposed planes with the Supermind-Overmind as the crucial nodus of the transition beyond the human into the
  Divine. For this transition, if it is to be at the same time a transformation, there is only one way, one path. First, there must be a conversion inwards, a going within to find the inmost psychic being and bring it out to the front, disclosing at the same time the inner mind, inner vital, inner physical parts of the nature. Next, there must be an ascension, a series of conversions upwards and a turning down to convert the lower parts. When one has made the inward conversion, one psychicises the whole lower nature so as to make it ready for the divine change. Going upwards, one passes beyond the human mind and at each stage of the Ascent there is a conversion into a new consciousness and an infusion of this new consciousness into the whole of the nature.
  

2.15_-_The_Cosmic_Consciousness, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  The link between the spiritual and the lower planes of the mental being is that which is called in the old Vedantic phraseology the vijnana and which we may term the Truth-plane or the ideal mind or supermind where the One and the Many meet and our being is freely open to the revealing light of the divine Truth and the inspiration of the divine Will and Knowledge. If we can break down the veil of the intellectual, emotional, sensational mind which our ordinary existence has built between us and the Divine, we can then take up through the Truth-mind all our mental, vital and physical experience and offer it up to the spiritual -- this was the secret or mystic sense of the old Vedic "sacrifice" -- to be converted into the terms of the infinite truth of Sachchidananda, and we can receive the powers and illuminations of the infinite Existence in forms of a divine knowledge, will and delight to be imposed on our mentality, vitality, physical existence till the lower is transformed into the perfect vessel of the higher. This was the double Vedic movement of the descent and birth of the gods in the human creature and the Ascent of the human powers that struggle towards the divine knowledge, power and delight and climb into the godheads, the result of which was the possession of the One, the Infinite, the beatific existence, the union with God, the Immortality. By possession of this ideal plane we break down entirely the opposition of the lower and the higher existence, the false gulf created by the Ignorance between the finite and the Infinite, God and Nature, the One and the Many, open the gates of the Divine, fulfil the individual in the complete harmony of the cosmic consciousness and realise in the cosmic being the epiphany of the transcendent Sachchidananda.
  

2.18_-_The_Evolutionary_Process_-_Ascent_and_Integration, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  The principle of the process of evolution is a foundation, from that foundation an ascent, in that ascent a reversal of consciousness and, from the greater height and wideness gained, an action of change and new integration of the whole nature.
  The first foundation is Matter; the Ascent is that of Nature; the integration is an at first unconscious or half-conscious automatic change of Nature by Nature. But as soon as a more completely conscious participation of the being has begun in these workings of Nature, a change in the functioning of the process is inevitable. The physical foundation of Matter remains, but Matter can no longer be the foundation of the consciousness; consciousness itself will be no longer in its origin a welling up from the Inconscient or a concealed flow from an occult inner subliminal force under the pressure of contacts from the universe. The foundation of the developing existence will be the new spiritual status above or the unveiled soul status within us; it is a flow of light and knowledge and will from above and a reception from within that will determine the reactions of the being to cosmic experience. The whole concentration of the being will be shifted from below upwards and from without inwards; our higher and inner being now unknown to us will become ourselves, and the outer or surface being which we now take for ourselves will be only an open front or an annexe through which the true being meets the universe. The outer world itself will become inward to the spiritual awareness, a part of itself, intimately embraced in a knowledge and feeling of unity and identity, penetrated by an intuitive regard of the mind, responded to by the direct contact of consciousness with consciousness, taken into an achieved integrality. The old inconscient foundation itself will be made conscious in us by the inflow of light and awareness from above and its depths annexed to the heights of the spirit. An integral consciousness will become the basis of an entire harmonisation of life through the total transformation, unification, integration of the being and the nature.
  

2.24_-_Gnosis_and_Ananda, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  the Ascent to the gnosis, the possession of something of the gnostic consciousness must elevate the soul of man and sublimate his life in the world into a glory of light and power and bliss and infinity that can seem in comparison with the lame action and limited realisations of our present mental and physical existence the very status and dynamis of a perfection final and absolute. And it is a true perfection, such as nothing before it has yet been in the ascension of the spirit. For even the highest spiritual realisation on the plane of mentality has in it something top-heavy, one-sided and exclusive; even the widest mental spirituality is not wide enough and it is marred too by its imperfect power of self-expression in life. And yet in comparison with what is beyond it, this too, this first gnostic splendour is only a bright passage to a more perfect perfection. It is the secure and shining step from which we can happily mount still upwards into the absolute infinities which ale the origin and the goal of the incarnating spirit. In this farther ascension the gnosis does not disappear, but reaches rather its own supreme Light out of which it has descended to mediate between mind and the supreme Infinite.
  
  --
  
  And what then is the necessity of a still higher step and what difference is there between the soul in gnosis and the soul in the Bliss? There is no essential difference, but yet a difference, because there is a transfer to another consciousness and a certain reversal in position, -- for each step of the Ascent from Matter to the highest Existence there is a reversal of consciousness. The soul no longer looks up to something beyond it, but is in it and from it looks down on all that it was before. On all planes indeed the Ananda can be discovered because everywhere it exists and is the same. Even there is a repetition of the Ananda plane on each lower world of consciousness. But in the lower planes not only is it reached by a sort of dissolution into it of the pure mind or the life-sense or the physical awareness, but it is, as it were, itself diluted by the dissolved form of mind, life or matter held in the dilution and turned into a poor thinness wonderful to the lower consciousness but not comparable to its true intensities. The gnosis has on the contrary a dense light of essential consciousness483a in which the intense fullness of the Ananda can be. And when the form of gnosis is dissolved into the Ananda, it is not annulled altogether, but undergoes a natural change by which the soul is carried up into its last and absolute freedom; for it casts itself into the absolute existence of the spirit and is enlarged into its own entirely self-existent bliss infinitudes. The gnosis has the infinite and absolute as the conscious source, accompaniment, condition, standard, field and atmosphere of all its activities, it possesses it as its base, fount, constituent material, indwelling and inspiring Presence; but in its action it seems to stand out from it as its operation, as the rhythmical working of its activities, as a divine Maya483b or Wisdom-Formation of the Eternal. Gnosis is the divine Knowledge-Will of the divine Consciousness-Force; it is harmonic consciousness and action of prakriti-Purusha -- full of the delight of the divine existence. In the Ananda the knowledge goes back from these willed harmonies into pure self-consciousness, the will dissolves into pure transcendent force and both are taken up into the pure delight of the Infinite. The basis of the gnostic existence is the self-stuff and self-form of the Ananda.
  

2.25_-_The_Triple_Transformation, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  There is a will in her to effectuate a true manifestation of the embodied life of the Spirit, to complete what she has begun by a passage from the Ignorance to the Knowledge, to throw off her mask and to reveal herself as the luminous Consciousness-Force carrying in her the eternal Existence and its universal Delight of being. It then becomes obvious that there is something not yet accomplished, there becomes clear to view the much that has still to be done, bhuri aspas.t.a kartvam; there is a height still to be reached, a wideness still to be covered by the eye of vision, the wing of the will, the self-affirmation of the spirit in the material universe. What the evolutionary Power has done is to make a few individuals aware of their souls, conscious of their selves, aware of the eternal being that they are, to put them into communion with the Divinity or the Reality which is concealed by her appearances: a certain change of nature prepares, accompanies or follows upon this illumination, but it is not the complete and radical change which establishes a secure and settled new principle, a new creation, a permanent new order of being in the field of terrestrial Nature. The spiritual man has evolved, but not the supramental being who shall thenceforward be the leader of that Nature.
  This is because the principle of spirituality has yet to affirm itself in its own complete right and sovereignty; it has been up till now a power for the mental being to escape from itself or to refine and raise itself to a spiritual poise, it has availed for the release of the Spirit from mind and for the enlargement of the being in a spiritualised mind and heart, but not - or rather not yet sufficiently - for the self-affirmation of the Spirit in its own dynamic and sovereign mastery free from the mind's limitations and from the mental instrumentation. The development of another instrumentation has begun, but has yet to become total and effective; it has besides to cease to be a purely individual self-creation in an original Ignorance, something supernormal to earth-life that must always be acquired as an individual achievement by a difficult endeavour. It must become the normal nature of a new type of being; as mind is established here on a basis of Ignorance seeking for Knowledge and growing into Knowledge, so supermind must be established here on a basis of Knowledge growing into its own greater Light. But this cannot be so long as the spiritual-mental being has not risen fully to supermind and brought down its powers into terrestrial existence. For the gulf between mind and supermind has to be bridged, the closed passages opened and roads of ascent and descent created where there is now a void and a silence. This can be done only by the triple transformation to which we have already made a passing reference: there must first be the psychic change, the conversion of our whole present nature into a soul-instrumentation; on that or along with that there must be the spiritual change, the descent of a higher Light, Knowledge, Power, Force, Bliss, Purity into the whole being, even into the lowest recesses of the life and body, even into the darkness of our subconscience; last, there must supervene the supramental transmutation, - there must take place as the crowning movement the Ascent into the supermind and the transforming descent of the supramental Consciousness into our entire being and nature.
  At the beginning the soul in Nature, the psychic entity, whose unfolding is the first step towards a spiritual change, is an entirely veiled part of us, although it is that by which we exist and persist as individual beings in Nature. The other parts of our natural composition are not only mutable but perishable; but the psychic entity in us persists and is fundamentally the same always: it contains all essential possibilities of our manifestation but is not constituted by them; it is not limited by what it manifests, not contained by the incomplete forms of the manifestation, not tarnished by the imperfections and impurities, the defects and depravations of the surface being.
  --
  But this aggregate is, because of its composition, a heterogeneous compound, not a single harmonious and homogeneous whole. This is the reason why there is a constant confusion and even a conflict in our members which our mental reason and will are moved to control and harmonise and have often much difficulty in creating out of their confusion or conflict some kind of order and guidance; even so, ordinarily, we drift too much or are driven by the stream of our nature and act from whatever in it comes uppermost at the time and seizes the instruments of thought and action, - even our seemingly deliberate choice is more of an automatism than we imagine; our co-ordination of our multifarious elements and of our consequent thoughts, feelings, impulses, actions by the reason and will is incomplete and a half-measure. In animal being Nature acts by her own mental and vital intuitions; she works out an order by the compulsion of habit and instinct which the animal implicitly obeys, so that the shiftings of its consciousness do not matter. But man cannot altogether act in the same way without forfeiting his prerogative of manhood; he cannot leave his being to be a chaos of instincts and impulses regulated by the automatism of Nature: mind has become conscious in him and is therefore self-compelled to make some attempt, however elementary in many, to see and control and in the end more and more perfectly harmonise the manifold components, the different and conflicting tendencies that seem to make up his surface being. He does succeed in setting up a sort of regulated chaos or ordered confusion in him, or at least succeeds in thinking that he is directing himself by his mind and will, even though in fact that direction is only partial; for not only a disparate consortium of habitual motive-forces but also newly emergent vital and physical tendencies and impulses, not always calculable or controllable, and many incoherent and inharmonious mental elements use his reason and will, enter into and determine his self-building, his nature-development, his life action. Man is in his self a unique Person, but he is also in his manifestation of self a multiperson; he will never succeed in being master of himself until the Person imposes itself on his multipersonality and governs it: but this can only be imperfectly done by the surface mental will and reason; it can be perfectly done only if he goes within and finds whatever central being is by its predominant influence at the head of all his expression and action. In inmost truth it is his soul that is this central being, but in outer fact it is often one or other of the part beings in him that rules, and this representative of the soul, this deputy self he can mistake for the inmost soul principle.
  This rule of different selves in us is at the root of the stages of the development of human personality which we have already had occasion to differentiate, and we can reconsider them now from the point of view of the government of the nature by the inner principle. In some human beings it is the physical Purusha, the being of body, who dominates the mind, will and action; there is then created the physical man mainly occupied with his corporeal life and habitual needs, impulses, life habits, mind habits, body habits, looking very little or not at all beyond that, subordinating and restricting all his other tendencies and possibilities to that narrow formation. But even in the physical man there are other elements and he cannot live altogether as the human animal concerned with birth and death and procreation and the satisfaction of common impulses and desires and the maintenance of the life and the body: this is his normal type of personality, but it is crossed, however feebly, with influences by which he can proceed, if they are developed, to a higher human evolution. If the inner subtle-physical Purusha insists, he can arrive at the idea of a finer, more beautiful and perfect physical life and hope or attempt to realise it in his own or in the collective or group existence. In others it is the vital self, the being of life, who dominates and rules the mind, the will, the action; then is created the vital man, concerned with self-affirmation, selfaggrandisement, life-enlargement, satisfaction of ambition and passion and impulse and desire, the claims of his ego, domination, power, excitement, battle and struggle, inner and outer adventure: all else is incidental or subordinated to this movement and building and expression of the vital ego. But still in the vital man too there are or can be other elements of a growing mental or spiritual character, even if these happen to be less developed than his life-personality and life-power. The nature of the vital man is more active, stronger and more mobile, more turbulent and chaotic, often to the point of being quite unregulated, than that of the physical man who holds on to the soil and has a certain material poise and balance, but it is more kinetic and creative: for the element of the vital being is not earth but air; it has more movement, less status. A vigorous vital mind and will can grasp and govern the kinetic vital energies, but it is more by a forceful compulsion and constraint than by a harmonisation of the being. If, however, a strong vital personality, mind and will can get the reasoning intelligence to give it a firm support and be its minister, then a certain kind of forceful formation can be made, more or less balanced but always powerful, successful and effective, which can impose itself on the nature and environment and arrive at a strong self-affirmation in life and action. This is the second step of harmonised formulation possible in the Ascent of the nature.
  At a higher stage of the evolution of personality the being of mind may rule; there is then created the mental man who lives predominantly in the mind as the others live in the vital or the physical nature. The mental man tends to subordinate to his mental self-expression, mental aims, mental interests or to a mental idea or ideal the rest of his being: because of the difficulty of this subordination and its potent effect when achieved, it is at once more difficult for him and easier to arrive at a harmony of his nature. It is easier because the mental will once in control can convince by the power of the reasoning intelligence and at the same time dominate, compress or suppress the life and the body and their demands, arrange and harmonise them, force them to be its instruments, even reduce them to a minimum so that they shall not disturb the mental life or pull it down from its ideative or idealising movement. It is more difficult because life and body are the first powers and, if they are in the least strong, can impose themselves with an almost irresistible insistence on the mental ruler. Man is a mental being and the mind is the leader of his life and body; but this is a leader who is much led by his followers and has sometimes no other will than what they impose on him. Mind in spite of its power is often impotent before the inconscient and subconscient which obscure its clarity and carry it away on the tide of instinct or impulse; in spite of its clarity it is fooled by vital and emotional suggestions into giving sanction to ignorance and error, to wrong thought and to wrong action, or it is obliged to look on while the nature follows what it knows to be wrong, dangerous or evil. Even when it is strong and clear and dominant, Mind, though it imposes a certain, a considerable mentalised harmony, cannot integrate the whole being and nature. These harmonisations by an inferior control are, besides, inconclusive, because it is one part of the nature which dominates and fulfils itself while the others are coerced and denied their fullness. They can be steps on the way, but not final; therefore in most men there is no such sole dominance and effected partial harmony, but only a predominance and for the rest an unstable equilibrium of a personality half formed, half in formation, sometimes a disequilibrium or unbalance due to the lack of a central government or the disturbance of a formerly achieved partial poise. All must be transitional until a first, though not a final, true harmonisation is achieved by finding our real centre. For the true central being is the soul, but this being stands back and in most human natures is only the secret witness or, one might say, a constitutional ruler who allows his ministers to rule for him, delegates to them his empire, silently assents to their decisions and only now and then puts in a word which they can at any moment override and act otherwise. But this is so long as the soul personality put forward by the psychic entity is not yet sufficiently developed; when this is strong enough for the inner entity to impose itself through it, then the soul can come forward and control the nature. It is by the coming forward of this true monarch and his taking up of the reins of government that there can take place a real harmonisation of our being and our life.
  --
  But all this change and all this experience, though psychic and spiritual in essence and character, would still be, in its parts of life-effectuation, on the mental, vital and physical level; its dynamic spiritual outcome6 would be a flowering of the soul in mind and life and body, but in act and form it would be circumscribed within the limitations - however enlarged, uplifted and rarefied - of an inferior instrumentation. It would be a reflected and modified manifestation of things whose full reality, intensity, largeness, oneness and diversity of truth and power and delight are above us, above mind and therefore above any perfection, within mind's own formula, of the foundations or superstructure of our present nature. A highest spiritual transformation must intervene on the psychic or psycho-spiritual change; the psychic movement inward to the inner being, the Self or Divinity within us, must be completed by an opening upward to a supreme spiritual status or a higher existence. This can be done by our opening into what is above us, by an ascent of consciousness into the ranges of overmind and supramental nature in which the sense of self and spirit is ever unveiled and permanent and in which the self-luminous instrumentation of the self and spirit is not restricted or divided as in our mind-nature, life-nature, body-nature. This also the psychic change makes possible; for lead away from life or to a Nirvana; but they are here being considered solely as steps in a transformation of the nature. as it opens us to the cosmic consciousness now hidden from us by many walls of limiting individuality, so also it opens us to what is now superconscient to our normality because it is hidden from us by the strong, hard and bright lid of mind, - mind constricting, dividing and separative. The lid thins, is slit, breaks asunder or opens and disappears under the pressure of the psycho-spiritual change and the natural urge of the new spiritualised consciousness towards that of which it is an expression here. This effectuation of an aperture and its consequences may not at all take place if there is only a partial psychic emergence satisfied with the experience of the Divine Reality in the normal degrees of the spiritualised mind: but if there is any awakening to the existence of these higher supernormal levels, then an aspiration towards them may break the lid or operate a rift in it. This may happen long before the psycho-spiritual change is complete or even before it has well begun or proceeded far, because the psychic personality has become aware and has an eager concentration towards the superconscience. An early illumination from above or a rending of the upper velamen can come as an outcome of aspiration or some inner readiness, or it may even come uncalled-for or not called for by any conscious part of the mind, - perhaps by a secret subliminal necessity or by an action or pressure from the higher levels, by something which is felt as the touch of the Divine Being, the touch of the Spirit, - and its results can be exceedingly powerful. But if it is brought about by a premature pressure from below, it can be attended with difficulties and dangers which are absent when the full psychic emergence precedes this first admission to the superior ranges of our spiritual evolution. The choice, however, does not always rest with our will, for the operations of the spiritual evolution in us are very various, and according to the line it has followed will be the turn taken at any critical phase by the action of the Consciousness-Force in its urge towards a higher self-manifestation and formation of our existence.
  If the rift in the lid of mind is made, what happens is an opening of vision to something above us or a rising up towards it or a descent of its powers into our being. What we see by the opening of vision is an Infinity above us, an eternal Presence or an infinite Existence, an infinity of consciousness, an infinity of bliss, - a boundless Self, a boundless Light, a boundless Power, a boundless Ecstasy. It may be that for a long time all that is obtained is the occasional or frequent or constant vision of it and a longing and aspiration, but without anything further, because, although something in the mind, heart or other part of the being has opened to this experience, the lower nature as a whole is too heavy and obscure as yet for more. But there may be, instead of this first wide awareness from below or subsequently to it, an ascension of the mind to heights above: the nature of these heights we may not know or clearly discern, but some consequence of the Ascent is felt; there is often too an awareness of infinite ascension and return but no record or translation of that higher state. This is because it has been superconscient to mind and therefore mind, when it rises into it, is unable at first to retain there its power of conscious discernment and defining experience. But when this power begins to awake and act, when mind becomes by degrees conscious in what was to it superconscient, then there begins a knowledge and experience of superior planes of existence. The experience is in accord with that which is brought to us by the first opening of vision: the mind rises into a higher plane of pure self, silent, tranquil, illimitable; or it rises into regions of light or of felicity, or into planes where it feels an infinite Power or a divine Presence or experiences the contact of a divine Love or Beauty or the atmosphere of a wider and greater and luminous Knowledge. In the return the spiritual impression abides; but the mental record is often blurred and remains as a vague or a fragmentary memory; the lower consciousness from which the Ascent took place falls back to what it was, with only the addition of an unkept or a remembered but no longer dynamic experience. In time the Ascent comes to be made at will and the consciousness brings back and retains some effect or some gain of its temporary sojourn in these higher countries of the spirit. These ascents take place for many in trance, but are perfectly possible in a concentration of the waking consciousness or, where that consciousness has become sufficiently psychic, at any unconcentrated moment by an upward attraction or affinity.
  But these two types of contact with the superconscient, though they can be powerfully illuminating, ecstatic or liberating, are by themselves insufficiently effective: for the full spiritual transformation more is needed, a permanent ascension from the lower into the higher consciousness and an effectual permanent descent of the higher into the lower nature.

2.26_-_Samadhi, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Intimately connected with the aim of the Yoga of Knowledge which must always be the growth, the Ascent or the withdrawal into a higher or a divine consciousness not now normal to us, is the importance attached to the phenomenon of Yogic trance, to Samadhi. It is supposed that there are states of being which can only be gained in trance; that especially is to be desired in which all action of awareness is abolished and there is no consciousness at all except the pure supramental immersion in immobile, timeless and infinite being. By passing away in this trance the soul departs into the silence of the highest Nirvana without possibility of return into any illusory or inferior state of existence. Samadhi is not so all-important in the Yoga of devotion, but it still has its place there as the swoon of being into which the ecstasy of divine love casts the soul. To enter into it is the supreme step of the ladder of Yogic practice in Rajayoga and Hathayoga. What then is the nature of Samadhi or the utility of its trance in an integral Yoga? It is evident that where our objective includes the possession of the Divine in life, a state of cessation of life cannot be the last consummating step or the highest desirable condition: Yogic trance cannot be an aim, as in so many Yogic systems, but only a means, and a means not of escape from the waking existence, but to enlarge and raise the whole seeing, living and active consciousness.
  

2.26_-_The_Ascent_towards_Supermind, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  object:2.26 - the Ascent towards Supermind
  class:chapter
  --
  Still there would be an increasing mastery and knowledge and an opening to a higher being and a higher nature.
  Our notion of free will is apt to be tainted with the excessive individualism of the human ego and to assume the figure of an independent will acting on its own isolated account, in a complete liberty without any determination other than its own choice and single unrelated movement. This idea ignores the fact that our natural being is a part of cosmic Nature and our spiritual being exists only by the supreme Transcendence. Our total being can rise out of subjection to fact of present Nature only by an identification with a greater Truth and a greater Nature. The will of the individual, even when completely free, could not act in an isolated independence, because the individual being and nature are included in the universal Being and Nature and dependent on the all-overruling Transcendence. There could indeed be in the Ascent a dual line. On one line the being could feel and behave as an independent self-existence uniting itself with its own impersonal Reality; it could, so self-conceived, act with a great force, but either this action would be still within an enlarged frame of its past and present self-formation of power of Nature or else it would be the cosmic or supreme Force that acted in it and there would be no personal initiation of action, no sense therefore of individual free will but only of an impersonal cosmic or supreme Will or Energy at its work. On the other line the being would feel itself a spiritual instrument and so act as a power of the Supreme Being, limited in its workings only by the potencies of the Supernature, which are without bounds or any restriction except its own Truth and self-law, and by the Will in her. But in either case there would be, as the condition of a freedom from the control of a mechanical action of Nature-forces, a submission to a greater conscious Power or an acquiescent unity of the individual being with its intention and movement in his own and in the world's existence.
  For the action of a new power of being in a higher range of consciousness might, even in its control on outer Nature, be extraordinarily effective, but only because of its light of vision and a consequent harmony or identification with the cosmic and transcendent Will; for it is when it becomes an instrumentation of a higher instead of a lower Power that the will of the being becomes free from a mechanical determinism by action and process of cosmic Mind-Energy, Life-Energy, Matter-Energy and an ignorant subjection to the drive of this inferior Nature. A power of initiation, even of an individual overseeing of world-forces could be there; but it would be an instrumental initiation, a delegated overseeing: the choice of the individual would receive the sanction of the Infinite because it was itself an expression of some truth of the Infinite. Thus the individuality would become more and more powerful and effective in proportion as it realised itself as a centre and formation of the universal and transcendent Being and Nature. For as the progression of the change proceeded, the energy of the liberated individual would be no longer the limited energy of mind, life and body, with which it started; the being would emerge into and put on - even as there would emerge in him and descend into him, assuming him into it - a greater light of Consciousness and a greater action of Force: his natural existence would be the instrumentation of a superior Power, an overmental and supramental ConsciousnessForce, the power of the original Divine Shakti. All the processes of the evolution would be felt as the action of a supreme and universal Consciousness, a supreme and universal Force working in whatever way it chose, on whatever level, within whatever self-determined limits, a conscious working of the transcendent and cosmic Being, the action of the omnipotent and omniscient World-Mother raising the being into herself, into her supernature. In place of the Nature of Ignorance with the individual as its closed field and unconscious or half-conscious instrument, there would be a Super-Nature of the divine Gnosis and the individual soul would be its conscious, open and free field and instrument, a participant in its action, aware of its purpose and process, aware too of its own greater Self, the universal, the transcendent Reality, and of its own Person as illimitably one with that and yet an individual being of Its being, an instrument and a spiritual centre.
  --
  But even this larger mentalisation and vitalisation from within is still an inferior illumination: it can lessen but it does not get rid of the Ignorance; it assails and compels to recede but it does not overcome the powers and forces that maintain the subtle and secret rule of the Inconscience. The spiritual forces acting through this larger mentalisation and vitalisation can bring in a higher light, strength and joy; but the full spiritualisation, the completest new integration of consciousness, is at this stage still impossible. If the inmost being, the psychic, takes charge, then indeed a deeper mutation, not mental, can make the descent of spiritual force more effective; for the totality of the conscious being will have undergone a preliminary soul change which emancipates mind, life, body from the snare of their own imperfections and impurities. At this point, a greater spiritual dynamisation, the working of the higher powers of the spiritual mind and overmind, can fully intervene: they may indeed have started their work before, though only as influences; but under the new conditions they can uplift the central being towards their own level and commence the last new integration of the nature.
  These higher powers work already in the human unspiritualised mind, but indirectly and in a fragmentary and diminished action; they are changed into substance and power of mind before they can work, and that substance and power are illumined and intensified in their vibrations, exalted and ecstasised in some of their movements by this entry, but not transformed. But when the spiritualisation begins and, as its greater results manifest themselves, - silence of the mind, the admission of our being into the cosmic consciousness, the Nirvana of the little ego in the sense of universal self, the contact with the Divine Reality, - the interventions of the higher dynamis and our openness to them can increase, they can assume a fuller, more direct, more characteristic power of their working, and this progression continues until some complete and mature action of them is possible. It is then that the turning of the spiritual towards the supramental transformation commences; for the heightening of the consciousness to higher and higher planes builds in us the gradation of the Ascent to supermind, that difficult and supreme passage.
  It is not to be supposed that the circumstances and the lines of the transition would be the same for all, for here we enter into the domain of the infinite: but, since there is behind all of them the unity of a fundamental truth, the scrutiny of a given line of ascent may be expected to throw light on the principle of all ascending possibilities; such a scrutiny of one line is all that can be attempted. This line is, as all must be, governed by the natural configuration of the stair of ascent: there are in it many steps, for it is an incessant gradation and there is no gap anywhere; but, from the point of view of the Ascent of consciousness from our mind upwards through a rising series of dynamic powers by which it can sublimate itself, the gradation can be resolved into a stairway of four main ascents, each with its high level of fulfilment. These gradations may be summarily described as a series of sublimations of the consciousness through Higher Mind, Illumined Mind and Intuition into Overmind and beyond it; there is a succession of self-transmutations at the summit of which lies the Supermind or Divine Gnosis. All these degrees are gnostic in their principle and power; for even at the first we begin to pass from a consciousness based on an original Inconscience and acting in a general Ignorance or in a mixed Knowledge-Ignorance to a consciousness based on a secret selfexistent Knowledge and first acted upon and inspired by that light and power and then itself changed into that substance and using entirely this new instrumentation. In themselves these grades are grades of energy-substance of the Spirit: for it must not be supposed, because we distinguish them according to their leading character, means and potency of knowledge, that they are merely a method or way of knowing or a faculty or power of cognition; they are domains of being, grades of the substance and energy of the spiritual being, fields of existence which are each a level of the universal Consciousness-Force constituting and organising itself into a higher status. When the powers of any grade descend completely into us, it is not only our thought and knowledge that are affected, - the substance and very grain of our being and consciousness, all its states and activities are touched and penetrated and can be remoulded and wholly transmuted. Each stage of this ascent is therefore a general, if not a total, conversion of the being into a new light and power of a greater existence.
  The gradation itself depends fundamentally upon a higher or lower substance, potency, intensity of vibrations of the being, of its self-awareness, of its delight of existence, of its force of existence. Consciousness, as we descend the scale, becomes more and more diminished and diluted, - dense indeed by its coarser crudity, but while that crudity of consistence compacts the stuff of Ignorance, it admits less and less the substance of light; it becomes thin in pure substance of consciousness and reduced in power of consciousness, thin in light, thin and weak in capacity of delight; it has to resort to a grosser thickness of its diminished stuff and to a strenuous output of its obscurer force to arrive at anything, but this strenuousness of effort and labour is a sign not of strength but of weakness. As we ascend, on the contrary, a finer but far stronger and more truly and spiritually concrete substance emerges, a greater luminosity and potent stuff of consciousness, a subtler, sweeter, purer and more powerfully ecstatic energy of delight. In the descent of these higher grades upon us it is this greater light, force, essence of being and consciousness, energy of delight that enter into mind, life, body, change and repair their diminished and diluted and incapable substance, convert it into its own higher and stronger dynamis of spirit and intrinsic form and force of reality. This can happen because all is fundamentally the same substance, the same consciousness, the same force, but in different forms and powers and degrees of itself: a taking up of the lower by the higher is therefore a possible and, but for our second nature of inconscience, a spiritually natural movement; what was put forth from the superior status is enveloped and taken up into its own greater being and essence.
  --
  A consciousness that proceeds by sight, the consciousness of the seer, is a greater power for knowledge than the consciousness of the thinker. The perceptual power of the inner sight is greater and more direct than the perceptual power of thought: it is a spiritual sense that seizes something of the substance of Truth and not only her figure; but it outlines the figure also and at the same time catches the significance of the figure, and it can embody her with a finer and bolder revealing outline and a larger comprehension and power of totality than thought-conception can manage. As the Higher Mind brings a greater consciousness into the being through the spiritual idea and its power of truth, so the Illumined Mind brings in a still greater consciousness through a Truth Sight and Truth Light and its seeing and seizing power. It can effect a more powerful and dynamic integration; it illumines the thought-mind with a direct inner vision and inspiration, brings a spiritual sight into the heart and a spiritual light and energy into its feeling and emotion, imparts to the life-force a spiritual urge, a truth inspiration that dynamises the action and exalts the life movements; it infuses into the sense a direct and total power of spiritual sensation so that our vital and physical being can contact and meet concretely, quite as intensely as the mind and emotion can conceive and perceive and feel, the Divine in all things; it throws on the physical mind a transforming light that breaks its limitations, its conservative inertia, replaces its narrow thought-power and its doubts by sight and pours luminosity and consciousness into the very cells of the body. In the transformation by the Higher Mind the spiritual sage and thinker would find his total and dynamic fulfilment; in the transformation by the Illumined Mind there would be a similar fulfilment for the seer, the illumined mystic, those in whom the soul lives in vision and in a direct sense and experience: for it is from these higher sources that they receive their light and to rise into that light and live there would be their ascension to their native empire.
  But these two stages of the Ascent enjoy their authority and can get their own united completeness only by a reference to a third level; for it is from the higher summits where dwells the intuitional being that they derive the knowledge which they turn into thought or sight and bring down to us for the mind's transmutation. Intuition is a power of consciousness nearer and more intimate to the original knowledge by identity; for it is always something that leaps out direct from a concealed identity. It is when the consciousness of the subject meets with the consciousness in the object, penetrates it and sees, feels or vibrates with the truth of what it contacts, that the intuition leaps out like a spark or lightning-flash from the shock of the meeting; or when the consciousness, even without any such meeting, looks into itself and feels directly and intimately the truth or the truths that are there or so contacts the hidden forces behind appearances, then also there is the outbreak of an intuitive light; or, again, when the consciousness meets the Supreme Reality or the spiritual reality of things and beings and has a contactual union with it, then the spark, the flash or the blaze of intimate truth-perception is lit in its depths. This close perception is more than sight, more than conception: it is the result of a penetrating and revealing touch which carries in it sight and conception as part of itself or as its natural consequence. A concealed or slumbering identity, not yet recovering itself, still remembers or conveys by the intuition its own contents and the intimacy of its self-feeling and self-vision of things, its light of truth, its overwhelming and automatic certitude.
  In the human mind the intuition is even such a truthremembrance or truth-conveyance, or such a revealing flash or blaze breaking into a great mass of ignorance or through a veil of nescience: but we have seen that it is subject there to an invading mixture or a mental coating or an interception and substitution; there is too a manifold possibility of misinterpretation which comes in the way of the purity and fullness of its action. Moreover, there are seeming intuitions on all levels of the being which are communications rather than intuitions, and these have a very various provenance, value and character. The infrarational "mystic", so styled, - for to be a true mystic it is not sufficient to reject reason and rely on sources of thought or action of which one has no understanding, - is often inspired by such communications on the vital level from a dark and dangerous source. In these circumstances we are driven to rely mainly on the reason and are disposed even to control the suggestions of the intuition - or the pseudo-intuition, which is the more frequent phenomenon, - by the observing and discriminating intelligence; for we feel in our intellectual part that we cannot be sure otherwise what is the true thing and what the mixed or adulterated article or false substitute. But this largely discounts for us the utility of the intuition: for the reason is not in this field a reliable arbiter, since its methods are different, tentative, uncertain, an intellectual seeking; even though it itself really relies on a camouflaged intuition for its conclusions, - for without that help it could not choose its course or arrive at any assured finding, - it hides this dependence from itself under the process of a reasoned conclusion or a verified conjecture. An intuition passed in judicial review by the reason ceases to be an intuition and can only have the authority of the reason for which there is no inner source of direct certitude. But even if the mind became predominantly an intuitive mind reliant upon its portion of the higher faculty, the co-ordination of its cognitions and its separated activities, - for in mind these would always be apt to appear as a series of imperfectly connected flashes, - would remain difficult so long as this new mentality has not a conscious liaison with its suprarational source or a self-uplifting access to a higher plane of consciousness in which an intuitive action is pure and native.
  --
  Intuition has a fourfold power. A power of revelatory truth- seeing, a power of inspiration or truth-hearing, a power of truth-touch or immediate seizing of significance, which is akin to the ordinary nature of its intervention in our mental intelligence, a power of true and automatic discrimination of the orderly and exact relation of truth to truth, - these are the fourfold potencies of Intuition. Intuition can therefore perform all the action of reason - including the function of logical intelligence, which is to work out the right relation of things and the right relation of idea with idea, - but by its own superior process and with steps that do not fail or falter. It takes up also and transforms into its own substance not only the mind of thought, but the heart and life and the sense and physical consciousness: already all these have their own peculiar powers of intuition derivative from the hidden Light; the pure power descending from above can assume them all into itself and impart to these deeper heartperceptions and life-perceptions and the divinations of the body a greater integrality and perfection. It can thus change the whole consciousness into the stuff of intuition; for it brings its own greater radiant movement into the will, into the feelings and emotions, the life-impulses, the action of sense and sensation, the very workings of the body consciousness; it recasts them in the light and power of truth and illumines their knowledge and their ignorance. A certain integration can thus take place, but whether it is a total integration must depend on the extent to which the new light is able to take up the subconscient and penetrate the fundamental Inconscience. Here the intuitive light and power may be hampered in its task because it is the edge of a delegated and modified supermind, but does not bring in the whole mass or body of the identity knowledge. The basis of Inconscience in our nature is too vast, deep and solid to be altogether penetrated, turned into light, transformed by an inferior power of the Truth-nature.
  The next step of the Ascent brings us to the Overmind; the intuitional change can only be an introduction to this higher spiritual overture. But we have seen that the Overmind, even when it is selective and not total in its action, is still a power of cosmic consciousness, a principle of global knowledge which carries in it a delegated light from the supramental gnosis. It is, therefore, only by an opening into the cosmic consciousness that the overmind ascent and descent can be made wholly possible: a high and intense individual opening upwards is not sufficient, - to that vertical ascent towards summit Light there must be added a vast horizontal expansion of the consciousness into some totality of the Spirit. At the least, the inner being must already have replaced by its deeper and wider awareness the surface mind and its limited outlook and learned to live in a large universality; for otherwise the overmind view of things and the overmind dynamism will have no room to move in and effectuate its dynamic operations. When the overmind descends, the predominance of the centralising ego-sense is entirely subordinated, lost in largeness of being and finally abolished; a wide cosmic perception and feeling of a boundless universal self and movement replaces it: many motions that were formerly ego-centric may still continue, but they occur as currents or ripples in the cosmic wideness. Thought, for the most part, no longer seems to originate individually in the body or the person but manifests from above or comes in upon the cosmic mindwaves: all inner individual sight or intelligence of things is now a revelation or illumination of what is seen or comprehended, but the source of the revelation is not in one's separate self but in the universal knowledge; the feelings, emotions, sensations are similarly felt as waves from the same cosmic immensity breaking upon the subtle and the gross body and responded to in kind by the individual centre of the universality; for the body is only a small support or even less, a point of relation, for the action of a vast cosmic instrumentation. In this boundless largeness, not only the separate ego but all sense of individuality, even of a subordinated or instrumental individuality, may entirely disappear; the cosmic existence, the cosmic consciousness, the cosmic delight, the play of cosmic forces are alone left: if the delight or the centre of Force is felt in what was the personal mind, life or body, it is not with a sense of personality but as a field of manifestation, and this sense of the delight or of the action of Force is not confined to the person or the body but can be felt at all points in an unlimited consciousness of unity which pervades everywhere.
  But there can be many formulations of overmind consciousness and experience; for the overmind has a great plasticity and is a field of multiple possibilities. In place of an uncentred and unplaced diffusion there may be the sense of the universe in oneself or as oneself: but there too this self is not the ego; it is an extension of a free and pure essential self-consciousness or it is an identification with the All, - the extension or the identification constituting a cosmic being, a universal individual.
  --
  The soul would pass beyond the borders of the Ignorance and cross its original line of departure from the supreme Knowledge: it would enter into the integrality of the supramental gnosis; the descent of the gnostic Light would effectuate a complete transformation of the Ignorance.
  This or something more largely planned on these lines might be regarded as the schematic, logical or ideal account of the spiritual transformation, a structural map of the Ascent to the supramental summit, looked at as a succession of separate steps, each accomplished before the passage to the next commences. It would be as if the soul, putting forth an organised natural individuality, were a traveller mounting the degrees of consciousness cut out in universal Nature, each ascent carrying it totally as a definite integer, as a separate body of conscious being, from one state of its existence to the next in order. This is so far correct that a sufficient integration of one status has to be complete before an ascent to the next higher station can be entirely secure: this clear succession might also be the course followed by a few even in the early stages of this evolution, and it might become too a normal process after the whole stair-flight of the evolution had been built and made safe. But evolutionary Nature is not a logical series of separate segments; it is a totality of ascending powers of being which interpenetrate and dovetail and exercise in their action on each other a power of mutual modification.
  When the higher descends into the lower consciousness, it alters the lower but is also modified and diminished by it; when the lower ascends, it is sublimated but at the same time qualifies the sublimating substance and power. This interaction creates an abundant number of different intermediate and interlocked degrees of the force and consciousness of being, but it also makes it difficult to bring about a complete integration of all the powers under the full control of any one power. For this reason there is not actually a series of simple clear-cut and successive stages in the individual's evolution; there is instead a complexity and a partly determinate, partly confused comprehensiveness of the movement. The soul may still be described as a traveller and climber who presses towards his high goal by step on step, each of which he has to build up as an integer but must frequently redescend in order to rebuild and make sure of the supporting stair so that it may not crumble beneath him: but the evolution of the whole consciousness has rather the movement of an ascending ocean of Nature; it can be compared to a tide or a mounting flux, the leading fringe of which touches the higher degrees of a cliff or hill while the rest is still below. At each stage the higher parts of the nature may be provisionally but incompletely organised in the new consciousness while the lower are in a state of flux or formation, partly moving in the old way though influenced and beginning to change, partly belonging to the new kind but still imperfectly achieved and not yet firm in the change. Another image might be that of an army advancing in columns which annexes new ground, while the main body is still behind in a territory overrun but too large to be effectively occupied, so that there has to be a frequent halt and partial return to the traversed areas for consolidation and assurance of the hold on the occupied country and assimilation of its people. A rapid conquest might be possible, but it would be of the nature of an encampment or a domination established in a foreign country; it would not be the assumption, total assimilation, integration needed for the entire supramental change.
  --
  The intricacy, the interwoven action of these powers and parts of the being is so great that it may almost be said that in this change nothing is accomplished until all is accomplished. There is a tide and ebb, the forces of the old nature receding and again partially occupying their old dominions, effectuating a slow retreat with rear-line actions and return attacks and aggressions, the higher influx occupying each time more conquered territory but imperfectly sure of sovereignty so long as anything is left that has not become part of its luminous regime.
  A third complexity is brought in by the power of the consciousness to live in more than one status at a time; especially, a difficulty is created by the division of our being into an inner and an outer or surface nature and the farther intricacy of a secret circumconscient or environmental consciousness in which are determined our unseen connections with the world outside us. In the spiritual opening, it is the awakened inner being that readily receives and assimilates the higher influences and puts on the higher nature; the external surface self, more entirely moulded by the forces of the Ignorance and Inconscience, is slower to awake, slower to receive, slower to assimilate. There is therefore a long stage in which the inner being is sufficiently transformed but the outer is still involved in a mixed and difficult movement of imperfect change. This disparity repeats itself at each step of the Ascent; for in each change the inner being follows more readily, the outer limps after, reluctant or else incompetent in spite of its aspiration and desire: this necessitates a constantly repeated labour of assumption, adaptation, orientation, a labour reproduced in new terms always but always the same in principle. But even when the outer and the inner nature of the individual are unified in a harmonised spiritual consciousness, that still more external but occult part of him in which his being mixes with the being of the outside world and through which the outside world invades his consciousness remains a field of imperfection. There is necessarily a commerce here between disparate influences: the inner spiritual influence is met by quite opposite influences strong in their control of the present world-order; the new spiritual consciousness has to bear the shock of the dominant and established unspiritualised powers of the Ignorance. This creates a difficulty which is of capital importance in all stages of the spiritual evolution and its urge towards a change of the nature.
  A subjective spirituality can be established which refuses or minimises commerce with the world or is content to witness its action and throw back or throw out its invading influences without allowing any reaction to them or admitting their intrusion: but if the inner spirituality is to be objectivised in a free worldaction, if the individual has to project himself into the world and in a sense take the world into himself, this cannot be dynamically done without receiving the world influences through one's own circumconscient or environmental being. The spiritual inner consciousness has then to deal with these influences in such a way that, as soon as they approach or enter, they become either obliterated and without result or transformed by their very entry into its own mode and substance. Or it may force them to receive the spiritual influence and return with a transforming power on the world they come from, for such a compulsion on the lower universal Nature is part of a perfect spiritual action. But for that the circumconscient or environmental being must be so steeped in the spiritual light and spiritual substance that nothing can enter into it without undergoing this transformation: the invading external influences have not to bring in at all their lower awareness, their lower sight, their lower dynamism. But this is a difficult perfection, because ordinarily the circumconscient is not wholly our own formed and realised self but ourself plus the external world-nature. It is, for this reason, always easier to spiritualise the inner self-sufficient parts than to transform the outer action; a perfection of introspective, indwelling or subjective spirituality aloof from the world or self-protected against it is easier than a perfection of the whole nature in a dynamic, kinetic spirituality objectivised in the life, embracing the world, master of its environment, sovereign in its commerce with world-nature. But since the integral transformation must embrace fully the dynamic being and take up into it the life of action and the world-self outside us, this completer change is demanded of the evolving nature.

2.28_-_Rajayoga, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  It is here, when this foundation has been secured, that the practice of Asana and Pranayama come in and can then bear their perfect fruits. By itself the control of the mind and moral being only puts our normal consciousness into the right preliminary condition; it cannot bring about that evolution or manifestation of the higher psychic being which is necessary for the greater aims of Yoga. In order to bring about this manifestation the present nodus of the vital and physical body with the mental being has to be loosened and the way made clear for the Ascent through the greater psychic being to the union with the superconscient Purusha. This can be done by Pranayama. Asana is used by the Rajayoga only in its easiest and most natural position, that naturally taken by the body when seated and gathered together, but with the back and head strictly erect and in a straight line, so that there may be no deflection of the spinal cord. The object of the latter rule is obviously connected with the theory of the six Chakras and the circulation of the vital energy between the muladhara and the brahmarahdhra. The Rajayogic Pranayama purifies and clears the nervous system; it enables us to circulate the vital energy equally through the body and direct it also where we will according to need, and thus maintain a perfect health and soundness of the body and the vital being; it gives us control of all the five habitual operations of the vital energy in the system and at the same time breaks down the habitual divisions by which only the ordinary mechanical processes of the vitality are possible to the normal life. It opens entirely the six centres of the psycho-physical system and brings into the waking consciousness the power of the awakened shakti and the light of the unveiled Purusha on each of the ascending planes. Coupled with the use of the Mantra it brings the divine energy into the body and prepares for and facilitates that concentration in Samadhi which is the crown of the Rajayogic method.
  

2.28_-_The_Divine_Life, #The Life Divine, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  49: Acting in the light and power of the supramental knowledge, the evolving gnostic being would be more and more master of himself, master of the forces of consciousness, master of the energies of Nature, master of his instrumentation of life and matter. In the lesser status, the intermediate stages or formations of the evolving gnostic nature this power would not be present in its fullness: but in some degree of its activities it would be there; incipient and increasing with the Ascent of the scale, it would be a natural concomitant of the growth of consciousness and knowledge.
  

2.3.02_-_The_Supermind_or_Supramental, #Letters On Yoga I, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  It is the supramental Power that transforms mind, life and body
  - not the Sachchidananda consciousness which supports impartially everything. But it is by having experience of the Sachchidananda, pure existence-consciousness-bliss, that the Ascent to the supramental and the descent of the supramental become (at a much later stage) possible. For first one must get free from the ordinary limitation by the mental, vital and physical formations, and the experience of the Sachchidananda peace, calm, purity and wideness gives this liberation.
  
  --
  Letters on Yoga - I
   cosmic play would be something that one would finally feel as limited, ignorant, imperfect from its very nature. The free soul might regard it untouched and unmoved by its imperfections and vicissitudes, do some appointed work, try to help all or be an instrument of the Divine, but neither the work nor the instrumentation would have anything like the perfection or even the full light, power, bliss of the Divine. This could only be gained by an ascension into higher planes of cosmic existence or their descent into one's consciousness - and, if this were not envisaged or accepted, the push to Nirvana would still remain as a way of escape. The other way would be the Ascent after death into these higher planes, - the heavens of the religions signify after all nothing but such an urge to a greater, luminous, beatific
  Divine Existence.

2.3.03_-_Integral_Yoga, #Essays Divine And Human, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  the Ascent demands a one-centred all-gathering aspiration
  
  --
  
  the Ascent to supermanhood will be a radical change of consciousness, force and bliss-power, a potent building of all that is necessary to manifest the new godhead in mind, life and body.
  

2.3.07_-_The_Mother_in_Visions,_Dreams_and_Experiences, #The Mother With Letters On The Mother, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Here and in the next it is obviously the Mother here. The staircase is a very usual symbol seen by many and it meant the acceptance and call to the Ascent.
  

2.3.07_-_The_Vital_Being_and_Vital_Consciousness, #Letters On Yoga I, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  199
   mundane or spiritual. Here it is the vision of the Life Heavens, its perfection, its limitations and the counterclaim of the Earth or rather the Spirit or Power behind the earth consciousness. It has to be taken at that, as an expression of a certain aspect of things, an expression of a certain kind of experience, not of a mental dogma. There is a deep truth behind it, though it may not be the whole truth of the matter. In the poem, also, there is no question of a Divine Life here, though that is hinted at as the unexpressed possible result of the Ascent - because the
  Earth is not put aside ("Earth's heart was felt beating below me still"); nevertheless the poem expresses only the Ascent towards the Highest, far beyond the Life Heavens, and the Earth-Spirit claims that power and does not speak of any descent of a Divine
  Life. I say so much in order to get rid of that misconception so as not to have to go back to it when dealing with Earth's disharmonies.

3.03_-_The_Ascent_to_Truth, #On Education, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  object:3.03 - the Ascent to Truth
  class:chapter
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
  A Drama of Life in a Prologue, Seven Stages and an Epilogue
  --
  
  Seven stages of the Ascent, of which the seventh is at the summit.
  
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
   unshakable will and nerves of steel are needed to overcome all these obstacles. I am ready for every sacrifice, every austerity, every renunciation in order to make myself worthy of the sublime goal I have set before me.
  --
  
  So tomorrow we shall all meet at the foot of the mountain and together we shall begin the Ascent. Good-bye.
  
  --
  
  Seven Stages of the Ascent
  FIRST STAGE
  --
  Cheerfully, easily, we have climbed the mountain all together as far as this plateau from which we can look at life and better understand its problems and the cause of human suffering. Our knowledge is becoming vaster and deeper and we are nearer to finding the solution I am seeking... (Silence)
  But here we come to a decisive turning-point. Now the Ascent will become steeper and harder and above all, we are going to cross over to the other side of the mountain where we shall no longer be able to see the valley and men. This means that
  I shall have to give up my work and betray my pledge to help humanity. Do not ask me to stay with you; I must leave you and return to my duty. (He starts back on the downward path. The others look at one another in surprise and disappointment.)
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
  
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
   the growing feeling that we are behaving like children. It was revealed to us that if we climbed this precipitous mountain whose summit no one has yet been able to scale, we would reach the Truth - and we set out without even bothering to study the way up. How do we know that we have not taken the wrong path? Where is our assurance that the result will conform to our hopes? It seems to me that we have acted with unpardonable imprudence and that our endeavour is not at all scientific. I have therefore decided, although to my great regret, since my friendly feelings towards you all remain intact, that I must stop here in order to study the problem and if possible to form some certainty about the path to follow, the right path, the one which leads to the goal.
  --
  
  I have to say, I shall take up the Ascent again and rejoin you, wherever you are, in quest of new discoveries.
  
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
  
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
   with the Eternal and nothing else exists for me, nothing else is necessary. All that is not That is illusory, worthless. So I consider that I have reached the end of the path. (He gestures towards the plateau on the left.) And here is a sublime and solitary spot, a place that is truly favourable to the life I shall lead from now on. I shall live here in perfect contemplation, far from earth and men, free at last from the need to live.
  --
  
  the Ascent to Truth
  

3.1.02_-_Spiritual_Evolution_and_the_Supramental, #Letters On Yoga I, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  Human History and Spiritual Evolution
  There have been times when the seeking for spiritual attainment was, at least in certain civilisations, more intense and widespread than now or rather than it has been in the world in general during the past few centuries. For now the curve seems to be the beginning of a new turn of seeking which takes its start from what was achieved in the past and projects itself towards a greater future. But always, even in the age of the Vedas or in Egypt, the spiritual achievement or the occult knowledge was confined to a few; it was not spread in the whole mass of humanity. The mass of humanity evolves slowly, containing in itself all stages of the evolution from the material and the vital man to the mental man. A small minority has pushed beyond the barriers, opening the doors to occult and spiritual knowledge and preparing the Ascent of the evolution beyond mental man into spiritual and supramental being. Sometimes this minority has exercised an enormous influence as in Vedic India, Egypt or, according to tradition, in Atlantis, and determined the civilisation of the race, giving it a strong stamp of the spiritual or the occult; sometimes they have stood apart in their secret schools or orders, not directly influencing a civilisation which was sunk in material ignorance or in chaos and darkness or in the hard external enlightenment which rejects spiritual knowledge.
  

3.7.1.06_-_The_Ascending_Unity, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  This is a way of seeing things, harmonious at least in its complexity, supple and capable of a certain all-embracing scope, which we can take as a basis for our ideas of rebirth, - an ascending unity, a spirit involved in material existence which scales wonderfully up many gradations through life to organised mind and beyond mind to the evolution of its own complete self-conscience, the individual following that gradation and the power for its self-crowning. If human mind is the last word of its possibility on earth, then rebirth must end in man and proceed by some abrupt ceasing either to an existence on other planes or to an annulment of its spiritual circle. But if there are higher powers of the spirit which are attainable by birth, then the Ascent is not finished, greater assumptions may lie before the soul which has now reached and is lifted to a perfecting of the high scale of humanity. It may even be that this ascending rebirth is not the long upward rocket shooting of a conscious being out of matter or its whirling motion in mind destined to break up and dissolve in some high air of calm nothingness or of silent timeless infinity, but a progress to some great act and high display of the
  Divinity which shall give a wise and glorious significance to his persistent intention in an eternal creation. Or that at least may be one power of the Eternal's infinite potentiality.

3_-_Commentaries_and_Annotated_Translations, #Hymns to the Mystic Fire, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  manifestation of the vast Truth; this wideness of the Rodasi is
  always a feature of the Ascent of the gods, Agni or Indra, in that
  upward progress to the plane of the Truth, Swar, of which Agni

4.04_-_The_Perfection_of_the_Mental_Being, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  The difficulty of the Ascent is due to a natural ignorance. He is the Purusha, witness of mental and physical Nature, saksi, but not a complete knower of self and Nature, jnatr. Knowledge in the mentality is enlightened by his consciousness; he is the mental knower; but he finds that this is not a real knowledge, but only a partial seeking and partial finding, a derivative uncertain reflection and narrow utilisation for action from a greater light beyond which is the real knowledge. This light is the self-awareness and all-awareness of Spirit. The essential self-awareness he can arrive at even on the mental plane of being, by reflection in the soul of mind or by its absorption in spirit, as indeed it can be arrived at by another kind of reflection or absorption in soul of life and soul of body. But for participation in an effective all-awareness with this essential self-awareness as the soul of its action he must rise to supermind. To be lord of his being, he must be knower of self and Nature, jnata isvarah. Partially this may be done on a higher level of mind where it responds directly to supermind, but really and completely this perfection belongs not to the mental being, but to the ideal or knowledge Soul, vijnanamaya purusa. To draw up the mental into the greater knowledge being and that into the Bliss-Self of the spirit, anandamaya purusa, is the uttermost way of this perfection.
  

4.25_-_Towards_the_supramental_Time_Vision, #The Synthesis Of Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  This unified and infinite time consciousness and this vision and knowledge are the possession of the supramental being in its own supreme region of light and are complete only on the highest levels of the supramental nature. But in the Ascent of the human consciousness through the uplifting and transmuting evolutionary -- that is to say, self-unveiling, self-developing, progressively self-perfecting-process of Yoga, we have to take account of three successive conditions all of which have to be overpassed before we are able to move on the highest levels. The first condition of our consciousness, that in which we now move, is this mind of ignorance that has arisen out of the inconscience and nescience of material Nature, -- ignorant but capable of seeking for knowledge and finding it at least in a series of mental representations which may be made clues to the true truth and, more and more refined and illuminated and rendered transparent by the influence, the infiltration and the descent of the light from above, prepare the intelligence for opening to the capacity of true knowledge. All truth is to this mind a thing it originally had not and has had to acquire or has still to acquire, a thing external to it and to be gathered by experience or by following certain ascertained methods and rules of enquiry, calculation, application of discovered law, interpretation of signs and indices. Its very knowledge implies an antecedent nescience; it is the instrument of Avidya.
  
  --
  
  The issue out of this dilemma is to a greater perfection towards which the formation of the intuitive, inspired and revelatory mind is only a preparatory stage, and that comes by a constant instreaming and descent of more and more of the supramental light and energy into the whole mental being and a constant raising of the intuition and its powers towards their source in the open glories of the supramental nature. There is then a double action of the intuitive mind aware of, open to and referring its knowledge constantly to the light above it for support and confirmation and of that light itself creating a highest mind of knowledge, --really the supramental action itself in a more and more transformed stuff of mind and a less and less insistent subjection to mental conditions. There is thus formed a lesser supramental action, a mind of knowledge tending always to change into the true supermind of knowledge. The mind of ignorance is more and more definitely excluded, its place taken by the mind of self-forgetful knowledge illumined by the intuition, and the intuition itself more perfectly organised becomes capable of answering to a larger and larger call upon it. The increasing mind of knowledge acts as an intermediary power and, as it forms itself, it works upon the other, transforms or replaces it and compels the farther change which effects the transition from mind to supermind. It is here that a change begins to take place in the time-consciousness and time-knowledge which finds its base and complete reality and significance only on the supramental levels. It is therefore in relation to the truth of supermind that its workings can be more effectively elucidated : for the mind of knowledge is only a projection and a last step in the Ascent towards the supramental nature.
  

4.4.1.02_-_A_Double_Movement_in_the_Sadhana, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  consciousness from all parts of the body rising upwards to meet
  the Divine Consciousness above - the descent and the Ascent.
  *

4.4.1.03_-_Both_Ascent_and_Descent_Necessary, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  *
  There are two movements that are necessary - one is the Ascent
  through the increasing of peace and silence to its source above

4.4.1.04_-_The_Order_of_Ascent_and_Descent, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  *
  I think the descent is more usual than the Ascent. Some sadhaks
  finish the Ascent first or ascents and descents but more often the
  descents come first and the Ascent (above the head) takes place
  

4.4.1.07_-_Experiences_of_Ascent_and_Descent, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  the Ascent of the consciousness in the lower centres into the
  higher and the descent of the higher powers and the white light
  --
  horizontally also. The action from above opens it to the descent
  of forces from above the Mind and the Ascent of consciousness
  above the lid of the ordinary human mind. The horizontal action opens it to the cosmic consciousness on all its levels. The
  --
  It is the beginning of a very decisive experience and realisation -
  first, the Ascent above the mind (head) into the spiritual plane.
  It is here that one releases and is released into the vastness,
  --
  vital centres, physical centre and fills the whole body with the
  higher existence and consciousness. the Ascent is the liberation
  (mukti) and when once this ascends, one is liberated from the

4.4.2.02_-_Ascension_or_Rising_above_the_Head, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  This is called the Ascent of the lower consciousness - it cannot remain all the time but it can become more and more frequent until the descent of the higher consciousness is ready.
  

4.4.2.03_-_Ascent_and_Return_to_the_Ordinary_Consciousness, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  Ascent and Return to the Ordinary Consciousness
  I may say that the opening upwards, the Ascent into the Light and the subsequent descent into the ordinary consciousness and normal human life is very common as the first decisive experience in the practice of Yoga and may very well happen even without the practice of Yoga in those who are destined for the spiritual change, especially if there is a dissatisfaction somewhere with the ordinary life and a seeking for something more, greater or better. It comes often exactly in the way that she describes
  

4.4.2.04_-_Ascent_and_Dissolution, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  One can have the experience of Nirvana at the summit of the mind or anywhere in those planes that are now superconscient to the mind; the mind spiritualised by the Ascent into Self has the sense of laya, dissolution of itself, its thoughts, movements, sanskaras into a superconscient Silence and Infinity which it is
  

4.4.2.05_-_Ascent_and_the_Psychic_Being, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  *
  In your experience the Ascent was into the regions of the calm and silent Self above; when you came down you went into the depths of the psychic being and found there the same calm and wideness. This experience is of great importance for it means that the way to both these is now open to you - and these two
  

4.4.2.06_-_Ascent_and_the_Body, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  *
  What you have written is quite correct. The body is not connected ordinarily with the higher consciousness, it only receives what it can from the mind. It is being prepared for the direct connection by the Ascent of the inner or subtle body into that plane and the descent from it of the higher Light.
  

4.4.2.07_-_Ascent_and_Going_out_of_the_Body, #Letters On Yoga III, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  This new consciousness is open to all knowledge from above, but it does not think with the brain as does the ordinary mind - it has other and larger means of awareness than thought. No methodical opening of the centres is necessary - the centres are in fact open, otherwise there could not be this ascent. In this Yoga their opening comes automatically - what we call opening is not that, but an ability of the consciousness itself on the various levels to receive the descent of the Higher
  Consciousness above. By the Ascent one can indeed bring down knowledge from above. But the larger movement is to receive it from above and let it flow through into the lower mental and other levels. I may add that on all these levels, in mind, heart and below there comes a liberation from the physical limitation, a wideness which no longer allows an identification with the body.
  
  In this experience there is not usually the fear you had, unless it is in the body consciousness, as it were, which is alarmed by the unfamiliarity of the movement and fears to be abandoned or cast off. But this occurs rarely and does not usually repeat itself. It is therefore likely that there was an exteriorisation at the same time. You speak of being able to leave and enter the body at will; but this capacity is needed only for the phenomenon of exteriorisation - in the ascension of consciousness the Ascent and coming down become easy and ordinary actions and in the definitive realisation of a higher station above there is really no more coming down except with a part of the consciousness which may descend to work in the body or on the lower levels while the permanently high-stationed being above presides over all that is experienced and done.
  

5.01_-_On_the_Mysteries_of_the_Ascent_towards_God, #Words Of Long Ago, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  object:5.01 - On the Mysteries of the Ascent towards God
  class:chapter
  --
  
  On the Mysteries of the Ascent towards God
  

5.03_-_The_Divine_Body, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  The Supramental Manifestation upon Earth
   and power of the Divine and an ascent through these planes, a descent of them into the mental being might seem to be the natural evolutionary course. But in practice it might be found that these intermediate levels would not be sufficient for the total transformation since, being themselves illumined potentialities of mental being not yet supramental in the full sense of the word, they could bring down to the mind only a partial divinity or raise the mind towards that but not effectuate its elevation into the complete supramentality of the truth-consciousness. Still these levels might become stages of the Ascent which some would reach and pause there while others went higher and could reach and live on superior strata of a semi-divine existence. It is not to be supposed that all humanity would rise in a block into the supermind; at first those only might attain to the highest or some intermediate height of the Ascent whose inner evolution has fitted them for so great a change or who are raised by the direct touch of the Divine into its perfect light and power and bliss. The large mass of human beings might still remain for long content with a normal or only a partially illumined and uplifted human nature.
  

5.04_-_Supermind_and_the_Life_Divine, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  A manifestation of the Supermind and its truth-consciousness is then inevitable; it must happen in this world sooner or later. But it has two aspects, a descent from above, an ascent from below, a self-revelation of the Spirit, an evolution in Nature. the Ascent is necessarily an effort, a working of Nature, an urge or nisus on her side to raise her lower parts by an evolutionary or revolutionary change, conversion or transformation into the divine reality and it may happen by a process and progress or by a rapid miracle. The descent or self-revelation of the Spirit is an act of the supreme Reality from above which makes the realisation possible and it can appear either as the divine aid which brings about the fulfilment of the progress and process or as the sanction of the miracle. Evolution, as we see it in this world, is a slow and difficult process and, indeed, needs usually ages to reach abiding results; but this is because it is in its nature an emergence from inconscient beginnings, a start from nescience and a working in the ignorance of natural beings by what seems to be an unconscious force. There can be, on the contrary, an evolution in the light and no longer in the darkness, in which the evolving being is a conscious participant and cooperator, and this is precisely what must take place here.
  

5.05_-_Supermind_and_Humanity, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  Light not only to its own but to lower levels of consciousness in their climb towards self-transcendence. Overmind, Intuition,
  Illumined Mind and what I have called Higher Mind, these and other levels of a spiritualised and liberated mentality, will be able to reflect in the uplifted human mind and its purified and exalted feeling and force of life and action something of their powers and prepare the Ascent of the soul to their own plateaus and peaks of an ascending existence. This is essentially the change which can be contemplated as a result of the new evolutionary order, and it would mean a considerable extension of the evolutionary field itself and will answer the question as to the result on humanity of the advent of Supermind into the earth-nature.
  

5.06_-_Supermind_in_the_Evolution, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  The whole trouble of this incertitude arises from the fact that we do not look straight at the whole truth of the world as it is and draw from it the right conclusion as to what the world must be and cannot fail to be. This world is, no doubt, based ostensibly upon Matter, but its summit is Spirit and the Ascent towards Spirit must be the aim and justification of its existence and the pointer to its meaning and purpose. But the natural conclusion to be drawn from the supremacy and summit existence of Spirit is clouded by a false or imperfect idea of spirituality which has been constructed by intellect in its ignorance and even by its too hasty and one-sided grasp at knowledge. The Spirit has been thought of not as something allpervading and the secret essence of our being, but as something only looking down on us from the heights and drawing us only towards the heights and away from the rest of existence. So we get the idea of our cosmic and individual being as a great illusion, and departure from it and extinction in our consciousness of both individual and cosmos as the only hope, the sole release. Or we build up the idea of the earth as a world of ignorance, suffering and trial and our only future an escape into heavens beyond; there is no divine prospect for us here, no fulfilment possible even with the utmost evolution on earth in the body, no victorious transformation, no supreme object to be worked out in terrestrial existence. But if supermind exists, if it descends, if it becomes the ruling principle, all that seems impossible to mind becomes not only possible but inevitable. If we look closely, we shall see that there is a straining of mind and life on their heights towards their own perfection, towards
  

5.07_-_Mind_of_Light, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  For throughout the story of evolution there are two complementary aspects which constitute its action and are necessary to its totality; there is hidden in the involution of Nature the secret power and principle of being which lies concealed under the veil cast on it by material Nature and there is carried in that
  Nature itself the inevitable force of the principle compelling the process of emergence of its inherent powers and characters, the essential features which constitute its reality. As the evolutionary principle emerges, there are also two constant features of the process of the emergence: there are the gradations by which it climbs out of the involution and manifests more and more of its power, its possibilities, the force of the Godhead within it, and there is a constant manifestation of all types and forms of its being which are the visible, indicative and efficient embodiments of its essential nature. There appear in the evolutionary process organised forms and activities of Matter, the types of life and the living beings, the types of mind and the thinking beings, the luminosities and greatnesses of the spiritual principle and the spiritual beings whose nature, character, personality, mark the stages of the Ascent towards the highest heights of the evolution and the ultimate largest manifestation of what it is in itself and must become by the force of time and the allrevealing Spirit. This is the real sense and drive of what we see as evolution: the multiplication and variation of forms is only the means of its process. Each gradation contains the possibility and the certainty of the grades beyond it: the emergence of more and more developed forms and powers points to more perfected forms and greater powers beyond them, and each emergence of consciousness and the conscious beings proper to it enables the rise to a greater consciousness beyond and the greater order of beings up to the ultimate godheads of which Nature is striving and is destined to show herself capable. Matter developed its organised forms until it became capable of embodying living
  

5.7.1.07_-_Involution_and_Evolution, #Essays In Philosophy And Yoga, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  But if the Spirit has involved its eternal greatness in the material universe and is there evolving its powers by the virtue of a secret self-knowledge, is disclosing them in a grandiose succession under the self-imposed difficulties of a material form of being, is disengaging them from a first veiling absorbed inconscience of Nature, there is no difficulty in thinking or seeing that this soul shaped into humanity is a being of that Being, that this also has risen out of material involution by increasing self-expression in a series of births of which each grade is a new ridge of the Ascent opening to higher powers of the spirit and that it is still arising and will not be for ever limited by the present walls of its birth but may, if we will, be born into a divine humanity. Our humanity is the conscious meeting place of the finite and the infinite and to grow more and more towards that Infinite even in this physical birth is our privilege. This
  Infinite, this Spirit who is housed within us but not bound or shut in by mind or body, is our own self and to find and be our self was, as the ancient sages knew, always the object of our human striving, for it is the object of the whole immense working of Nature. But it is by degrees of the self-finding that

Agenda_Vol_10, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  animal... we're still all the way down in comparison with... with what has to be conquered - not even
  the first step of the Ascent.
  We think we're doing well, we give ourselves a little pat of encouragement!... That's really the

Agenda_Vol_12, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  planes of the mind. Those peaks of the Spirit are but self-paroxysms, p. 61; we must
  cleanse ourselves of the wisdoms of the past, the Ascents of the past, the illuminations of
  the past and the whole racket of the old sanctities of the Spirit, p. 29, etc. In other

Agenda_Vol_2, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  each of the different centers of the being. (Ah, let me say parenthetically that it wasn't AT ALL the
  ascent of a force like the Ascent of the Kundalini! It had absolutely nothing to do with the Kundalini
  movement and the centers, it wasn't that at all.) But while re-descending, it was as though WITHOUT
  --
  Consciousness,' Mother replied, 'Not "new!" One can't say "new" - Supreme Consciousness.'
  26This entire experience and Mother's insistence that it all happened 'without moving,' unlike the experience of the Ascent
  of the Kundalini, suggests that it is the supramental consciousness concealed in the depths of the cells, that somehow
  --
  transformation.' This passage confirmed and made me understand many experiences I had after that
  experience of the body's ascent [January 24, 1961] (the Ascent of the body-consciousness, followed by
  the descent of the supramental force into the body); immediately afterwards, everything (how to put

Agenda_Vol_3, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  Personally, I think I would begin with consciousness and deal with the vital afterwards.
  But if I speak of consciousness it will lead me to speak of the Ascent of consciousness, followed by
  the supraconscient. Can I speak about all that before the vital?

Agenda_Vol_5, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  the salute - we're happy to see You, you understand: Salute to You, O Light! Salute to You, O Truth!...
  You play the Ascent in stages, accompanied by and finishing off with a gust of aspiration: a soaring,
  a great soaring. Then, we touch the Light, it makes an explosion. We touch the Truth, we touch the

Agenda_Vol_7, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  Mind needed to go through the whole experience, to go down to the very bottom in order to understand
  everything and bring everything back towards the Ascent. For plants, it's really an ascent. Thus,
  according to this vision, there are three movements. But if you see the whole simultaneously, there are
  --
  (the first we can conceive of) is, very, very slowly, through all possible experiences, even the most
  complete mental denials of the Divine, the Ascent towards the Divine. And then, once we have climbed
  up... (Mother makes a gesture of descent), "Come, come here: change this prison into the mansion of

Agenda_Vol_8, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  Yes, while we were talking about dogmas, he said that all those outer things had no value for him
  and what mattered to him was the Ascent here [gesture to the heart], the assumption and
  resurrection here.

Agenda_Vol_9, #The Mothers Agenda, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  
  death; the other way is the Ascent towards... we won't yet say "immortality" because that's difficult for
  this substance, but life at will.

Aion_-_Part_13+, #Aion, #Carl Jung, #Psychology
  the distance of the points in question from one another. The
  arrows indicate the descent into Physis and the Ascent towards
  the spiritual. The lowest point is the serpent. The lapis, how-

Blazing_P3_-_Explore_the_Stages_of_Postconventional_Consciousness, #unset, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  separation from the indivisible Truth above.97
  The next step of the Ascent brings us to the Overmind; the intuitional change can only be an
  introduction to this higher spiritual overture. Butthe Overmind, even when it is selective

Evening_Talks_With_Sri_Aurobindo, #Talks With Sri Aurobindo, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  
  Disciple: Yes. I dont find the transformation in the Gita. The exposition of the levels of consciousness beyond mind, their functions, a clear, rational statement of intuitive consciousness, inspiration, revelation, and the Ascent of the consciousness through the Overmind to the supermind these things are quite new and not found even in the Upanishads.
  
  --
  
  You have also to accept Asuric and Rakshasik things, get the knowledge, know what they are, and throw them away. Otherwise the Ascent to the Supermind would be narrow and limited, not rich and varied and wide. But, of course, all cannot do that.
  
  --
  
  Along with the Ascent much that remains to be done
  
  --
  
  We also notice in our Sadhana that there is a movement of ascent. But that is not the whole thing, we have not to rest content merely with the Ascent. We have also to descend again and consciously bring down the Supramental Light, Truth and Harmony to govern and transform our nature that is, our mind, life, and body. There is thus an involution of the lower powers upward into the Truth from which the Spirit descends into Matter and then a manifestation of that Truth in all the nature.
  

General_Principles_of_Kabbalah, #unset, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  
  With the Ascent of the Light of Knowledge to its
  place, the vessel belonging to "Crown was amplified at
  --
  Since it is customary for "Foundation to make
  the Ascent to "Knowledge, we can see why, during the
  shattering of the vessels, the Light of "Foundation rose
  up to "Knowledge, even surpassing "Beauty. Further
  more, the Ascent was made in order to bind together all
  the six Sefirot and to transmit the illumination of
  --
  
  Now let us examine the Ascent of "Kingdom to
  the place of Knowledge. The matter is as follows: at
  --
  the Light of "Kingdom derived its power to rise up.
  Moreover, the Ascent of "Kingdom represents a great
  accomplishment in the process of Emendation.
  --
  In this way all the six Sefirot were emended by
  virtue of the Ascent of Kingdom.
  

Maps_of_Meaning_text, #Maps of Meaning, #Jordan Peterson, #Psychology
  complete breakdown and reformulation: is occasionally interrupted by re-constitution of what the present is
  and what the future should be. the Ascent of the individual, so to speak, is punctuated by periods of
  dissolution and rebirth.45 The more general model of human adaptation conceptualized most simply as
  --
  death, contaminated by the unbearable and unreturnable gift of the knowledge of good and evil. Myths of
  redemption that is, of the Ascent from chaos, of the return to paradise, or of the flight to heaven are
  tales designed to describe the process of remediation for the prehistoric fall. Such myths lay out a

Sayings_of_Sri_Ramakrishna_(text), #Sayings of Sri Ramakrishna, #Sri Ramakrishna, #Hinduism
  sadness. Again, the moon grows proud and thinks that by her light the world is lighted and bathed in
  beauty. But presently the dawn proclaims the Ascent of the sun on the eastern horizon. And where is
  the moon now!
  --
  BOOK II
  the Ascent OF MAN
  He who has not given up sinful ways, whose senses have not been restrained, who is unmeditative, and

Talks_With_Sri_Aurobindo_1, #unset, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  The Seers climb Indra like a ladder,
  Along with the Ascent all that remains to be done becomes clear.
  It is an extraordinary passage, expressing perfectly the experience. Do
  --
  SRI AUROBINDO: When any descent takes place, this crust prevents one from
  feeling it, but when the crust is removed the Ascent can take place more easily and the higher force can also be brought down. It is the physical crust
  that gives the most opposition. There is, of course, the vital opposition too

The_Golden_Bough, #unset, #The Mother, #Integral Yoga
  labour and industry as an obstacle to divine contemplation and to
  the Ascent of the soul towards the Father of spirits. In all their
  excursions they were followed by women with whom they lived on terms

The_Riddle_of_this_World, #unknown, #Sri Aurobindo, #Integral Yoga
  make it ready for the divine change. Going upwards, one passes beyond
  the human mind and at each stage of the Ascent, there is a conversion
  into a new consciousness and an infusion of this new consciousness into
  --
  impossible without this descending Force from the now invisible
  summits. That is why in this Yoga the Ascent to the Divine which it has in
  

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