The Divine Being should not be confused with the "personal God of popular religions" for all such formations are restricted representations of the one Ishwara. (Ibid, pg.352) The Divine Being is all-inclusive and therefore incorporates both the Brahman with attributes (the Saguna Brahman) and the Brahman without attributes (the Nirguna Brahman) and in a superior poise, transcends both. (Ibid)
Personality, Impersonality and The Person
Ordinarily we conceptualize a being in terms of personality. But in terms of an existential psychology, how elusive is that concept which the contemporary discipline of psychology holds so strongly! That personality is a frontal appearance of a being who evolves from an impersonal Inconscience and in life has to maintain makeshift compromises with an impersonal environment. That personality disappears at death when the being apparently loses itself in the impersonal matrix of Nature. And when a spiritual aspirant has to identify with the cosmic consciousness or the Transcendence, one has to become an universalized individual that has to outgrow the personality. "Personality makes its apparition as a creation of consciousness in an impersonal world; it is a limitation by a restricted formation of powers, qualities, habitual forces of the nature-action, an imprisonment in a limited circle of self-experience which we have to transcend, -- to lose personality is necessary if we are to gain universality, still more necessary if we are to rise into the Transcendence." (Ibid)
Does that mean that it is the impersonal which is basic and the personality is just a freak! But spiritual experience revealed that both impersonality and personality issue from a vast matrix that is the Being in its superlative poise -the Person who can take up many personalities and even the garb of impersonality.
We cannot relate with an anonymous figure and Reality cannot be meaningful if it did not reveal itself as a receptive consciousness; delight would be useless without an enjoyer, love would be fruitless without a lover and omnipotence can be ineffectual without an Almighty.
Sri Aurobindo describes that even if we follow the trajectory of evolution, whatever evolves is greater than the matrix from which the emergence occurs. Consciousness emerges from Inconscience, Mind emerges from Matter, Soul manifests after the Mind has consolidated itself and in continuation of that line, the Spirit - the true Person emerges as the greatest emergence of all. This is "the All-Person, the omnipresent Conscious Being." (Ibid, pg.353) It is the same Person who manifests in different poises - in the Transcendence as the Infinite Person, in the cosmic consciousness as the Cosmic Being and in the multiplicity as the Jivatman. The ego-bound limited personality is conceptualized due to the Mind's ignorance of the True Person within us.
Law and Logic of infinite consciousness
The Divine Being's modus operandi is far removed from our limited mental functioning. It is neither anthropomorphic nor mechanical and does not conform to our mental constructions. (Ibid, pg.354) The Divine is not bound by any law and is essentially free but it still acts through laws to express the spiritual reality of things. Thus all that is to manifest is programmed as an essence in the Supermind which is the field of integral cognition. Next the essence of a particular manifestation gets organized as spiritual archetypes in the Overmind or field of global cognition. The Divine next operates through intuitive laws that facilitate the manifestation of the spiritual archetypes in earthly reality. In the process, it has to act from Supernature (beyond the domain of the ego) to the ego bound lower Nature, making it receptive to the spiritual freedom "that knows and acts in the supreme and universal truth of the Spirit". (Ibid) It is only with the law and logic of infinite consciousness that "we ought to understand the significance and building and movement of the universe". (Ibid)
The sovereignty of the Being
Though Reality is one, it has a structural perspective in the form of the Being and a functional perspective in the form of Consciousness-Force, Maya or Shakti which is actually a power of the Being. Though both the perspectives are equipoised, the Being retains a certain sovereignty whether it is in an inner dynamic mode or in a silent mode. In the dynamic mode, the Being is the Lord, creator and ruler of the manifestation. In the silent mode, the Being stands back and gives freedom of action to the forces of Nature; yet its "sovereignty is still innate in the permission, at every step his tacit sanction, "let it be so", tathastu, is there implicit; for otherwise nothing could be done or happen". (Ibid, pg.355)
In an answer to the question about the nature of Force, Sri Aurobindo had answered (on 8th January, 1940):
Unless you accept a Being behind who applies the force and also becomes matter there is no other explanation......I have said in The Life Divine that you cannot explain the appearance of consciousness out of Matter unless you accept a Being behind. The Being may be either Unmanifest and involved in Matter or it may be Manifest. (Evening Talks, 3rd edition, 701)
Date of Update:
- By Dr. Soumitra Basu