Brahmasrii Dr K C Varadachari
3The doctrine of parallelism affirmed by Spinoza here undergoes a modification, for matter through mind alone reaches up to the Spirit, but mind cannot reach or lead matter unless it unifies itself with the Spirit. Transformation of Nature or matter in any manner is possible only when Spirit descends in some biological manner into both. It seems however more easy for mind to respond to Spirit than matter.
It is necessary to extinguish the Unconscious of man has been stirred deeply to the foundations. This is a cosmic Yoga; a churning process of civilizations making them yield whatever treasures life underneath the waters of the Unconscious, stilled by surface automatisms. This is the cause of great upheavals in every direction. All racial and geographical conflicts which till now were covered by a veneer of religious tolerance have been thrown up for solution or extinguishment. That is why despite all talks of intellectual co-operation and cultural understandings the greatest of fanatical war is being waged, for it is now the cosmic universal values that are set against the private and instinctive and unconscious values of the old age. The Unconscious has become conscious and is stirring fiercely and ruthlessly the primitive elemental values. Our intellect must either rise to the occasion or perish. The serpent-poison has at long last been exuded and like primeval fire it is burning everything that is before it. The present war, the fourth within a century and a half, has the characteristics of elemental cosmic fury.4
4 The puranic story of the “Churning of the Ocean” by the Gods of Light and Powers of Darkness may be seen to be an archetypal
this fire of the unconscious, this poison that is terrible to life-cosmic. And this can be done only by a consciousness poised on the infinite and eternal values of Universal Divine Life, beneficent, transforming and radical.5 Imperialistic aims either individual or racial or national have no place in that consciousness and have no value for that Consciousness.
act of the wars on the planes of evolution. ‘Poison, Purity and Perfection are the three stages at every step of the ascent. But it is also to be noted that the whole process is engineered by the descent of a super-power than that available which makes for all these reactivities.
Thus mind has to enter into its own celestial cave and worship at the altar of Spirit. It has to invoke itself to take a direct hand in its transformation from the private company of instinct to the universal company of intellect and rationality. It has to become supermind, more than mind and intellect and instinct. By such a path it would be able to release the Unconscious of its violence and fury and make it capable of universal beneficence. The Unconscious has in it the supreme capability to resonate with the Conscious, and as such the super-conscious must be more and more made to
5 Siva is the beneficent power who could drink the poison and the nectar equally. Such is the nature of the Supermind.
occupy the field of consciousness so that we may be in tune with the beneficence of the Supermind and invoke or instigate the harmonic rhythms in the Unconsciousness which today typify the material nature. This is what I mean by the ‘leading up of the Matter through its own route with the help of the mind that has gone into its own recesses and unified itself with the Spirit Transcendent!6
Thus a descent of the superconscious or supermind or Spirit into the intellect of the modern man must be achieved or else an ascent into the states of the Supermind must be made by the mind. But we have seen that any radical transformation of the private and possessive into the universal and integral could only be done by a force transcending the mind, which is universal and integral in its very nature. The first flush of the descent of such a super-consciousness may be such as to produce all sorts of conflicts or to throw up all the biological memory of the individual so that the new tenement may be fit for a permanent residing of the higher consciousness or it may even entail in some
6 See Note 3
cases total giving up of terrestrial or material being itself through a total immergence in Absolute Spirit (Saccidananda). The first paragraphs of this address will reveal that the descent of higher universal forces was not by any means accidental but purposive and providential and necessary for the next step in Divine Evolution and therefore the last of the alternatives would appear to be not specially the goal of the historical Process of Evolution.
Thus we are confronted with a new cultural impulse, a new pattern of society and individual, a new dimension in the psychic organization and a new biological mutation. Unlike previous epochs in known history it is universal and integral and the drive of the inner Spirit of man has been two pronged or many-pronged. Old religions and traditions have to undergo and are undergoing transformations suited to the new age that is emerging and the new race with its genius for symbolic interpretation on psychological and spiritual lines will transform the meaning of these religions in such as to present fundamental truths of Spirit which is unity and multiplicity, perfection and creation, Intelligence and power, revolutionary and
beneficent. Our old cultures may have to pass if they cannot adjust themselves to this new force which is multi-dimensional and multi-planal and integral.
A cosmic or ecumenic age is upon us, and a divine nature alone will be able to fulfil its demands. Our entire being has to be sublimated, transformed and transcended. It is not enough to become universally-minded in some respects; materially, for it cannot be secure for ever without a new education that makes men think and feel and sense universally, globally and divinely, for that is the characteristic of beneficence in all our undertaking. The fundamental goal of man is universal delight and universal happiness and fulfilment. Universal Truths are impersonal, and may or may not be beneficent, even like universal power which may act, impersonally, imperially, and ruthlessly. What is necessary is the universal goodness and love what transforms the brute and exalts the truth and makes for beneficence in all activities. This is the inner secret of Divine transcendence. From love is born truth, and from truth power.
But love is here not impersonal but more than personal. It is the secret unity of the One with its many, that makes it pour itself, lose itself and find itself in the many. It is the sacrifice, the Yajna, the perpetual Yoga of the Divine Nature to be and to express itself in universal and divine terms on all planes and existences which hang together in It and by It, and are held together as their Substans and Truth.
In the cosmic terms of space-time-causal nexus it is the glory of that One, the true infinite, to manifest His supreme transcendence in the many of his eternal Nature. Such is the Lila, that it can only imperil false infinites and not true Infinity. Perfection can yet be possible in terms of these conditions and under these conditions there can be what is called a pulsation of infinite dynamism which will integrate symbolically with the Whole and the transcendent find thus form oneness or identity or more truly resonate in perfect union. To sound the one is to tune the other. Such a creativity on the part of the individual integral being will make it continuous with the entire reality in and through the Divine Nature and man would have ceased to be the intellectual private creature he is and become a divine
being with super-senses (samjnana), super-knowledge (vijnana), super-power (prajnana), and Ananda (super-feeling).7
This is the future of mankind. To become organic with the integral Divine, limbs and organs or instruments or vehicles of the Divine Universal in action, transformed in every fibre of being so as to respond to and resonate imperfect unison with, the universal Super-personal Divine One. Such is identity in nature (Brahma-sampatti) possible to the individual, so much so the Divine would have transformed utterly the human into His own nature, for His own beneficent dynamism and enjoyment and Being.
7 cf. Synthesis of Yoga: Sri Aurobindo (chapters on these topics) in the “Arya” (1915 – 1921)
A careful reader of the works of H.P.B. would clearly perceive that the Masters of Wisdom are really aiming at the emergence of a New Race whose faculties would be almost characterized by the Vijnana or Gnostic consciousness or Buddhi.
HUMAN RIGHTS-REFLECTIONS ON CULTURE
It is undoubtedly a glorious day when the United Nations Organisation asserted that human beings everywhere have 'rights' which have to be recognized and enforced everywhere. That it has become necessary to enforce this in every country and in every form of Government is a significant fact.
This has become necessary owing to the cynical treatment meted out by governments both of the left and the right, demogocal and exploitative. Colonialism has been the main cause of creating two types of men, the ruled and rulers. Imperialism is but a dignified name for the mercantile colonism. Expansionism is a third form of this principle of classification of mankind. That this might be psychologically and biologically justified has been recognized; and it may conveniently be argued that just as children cannot govern themselves
and just as sick men cannot be left unprotected, protective custody has been left to the doctors of politics. This the wise men either self appointed and self-styled or really so had undertaken in many ways to enforce. Surely society has both these kinds of men. The aim is to cultivate all men to the sense of their individuality and health. Crime, their and anti-social activities undoubtedly stem out of lack of education. Primarily then men have the right of growth to their full individuality or reason, and all such that help the process of growth to this rational individualism. Thus a state's primary duty being education of all men, both intelligent and the healthy and the unintelligent and the unhealthy, the power to educate becomes a matter of deepest concern. Human nature unfortunately is not simply reason; it has a good slice of the forces that have built life, competition, survival, possession need for happiness. But needs have a tendency to turn into greeds because of the peculiar instinct of gathering for future use or provision for the future and the rainy day and lean harvests. Therein is introduced the principle of individual survival and competition and the instinct to gain advantage over the future is sought to achieve by
every means, fair or foul. It is precisely this fear of the future that turns needs into greeds. As against this principle of individual planning for his own future, a right it may be claimed, natural and innate, there is enforced the recognition of equal rights of other individuals. Thus we are confronted with the problem of reconciling the rights of all or surrendering the rights of some for the welfare of some others. This latter alternative it is that has led to the competitive machinery of civilization, and this has naturally been possible at the expense of members of one's own clan or tribe or in many cases at the expense of other clans and tribes, nationalities and communities. The process is not therefore limited to any one field, as it encroaches on all fields. This naturalness of man has time and again been the basic fact of loss of human freedom and the fathering of rights of some at the expense of others, less fortunate, less mighty and less intelligent.
Thanks to the realization that all men are equal and because of that new sense of recognition of openness of nature in all peoples of the world and in all strata of society, primitive or advanced, it has become possible to speak of a real brotherhood. A host of
valiant figure of humanity and wisdom saw that political and economic prosperity usually go with a kind of exploitation. Unless political and economic life of persons to be ordered on the basis of recognition of rights of all equally human nature will be forced to go the whole way through a competitive psychology which was suitable to a different kind of words. The recognition of human rights became urgent at the social pattern of life turned from primitive agrarian, nomadic and exploitative, scientific and technological. The contents of rights might have change or additional rights may have come into being and certain have to be abridged or expanded. Man has begun to realize that rights of life work, occupation, defence, education, speech, possession, leisure, and enjoyment are all necessary for establishing his dignity as an individual. Self-determination then is the right that man demands, both individually and socially. This is the freedom. Are there limits to this self determination. Obviously there are in so far as this self-determination should not encroach on others' self-determination. Nor can the self-determination of an institution encroach on the basic self-determination of each individual. The clash of
freedoms or rights is the problem of the modern society.
Rights are not however a modern discovery. Individuals always have fought for freedom from fear, from insecurity, from dominance, for being oneself even in the minority, for all these have been considered be necessary for one's sense of existence. Ancient Indian thought rightly then held that men must have the right to property or that is the meaning of power to dispose of what one earns and acquires or makes as one likes, not merely to be a trustee for another men must have the right enjoy one's life or pursue certain desires which are considered to be natural, in other words, to acquire and enjoy these which are not necessities as such for life but which make life pleasant. These have varied from time to time but on the whole man has sought pleasures and objects of pleasures. Here again is the recognition not merely of hedonism as the good but that participates in the good. The right to equal treatment before society or in societal affairs, independent of property qualifications, is again the original freedom for freedom for equality in the eyes of the law. This has become indeed the first important right through history for the inequal treatment of human beings in respect of
property, or pleasures has become a basic cry for justice. This enforcement of equality in social matters is not certainly in the interests so much of the society or state but certainly a recognition of the conscience of man. That other factors have blurred this recognition showed that man's conscience always reveals this sense of justice, expressed as sympathy or lawfulness or dharma. The final right of man is to freedom in respect of his spiritual destiny, it becomes a factor in the recognition of the trans-social nature of every human being. This trans-social nature of man is considered to be spiritual and includes the element of striving towards the attainment of fuller meaning of one's existence. The four purusharthas then, reveal that man's natural right is fourfold and it is the business of Human Society or it's Rules or powers to make for these four freedoms. That men may close one or two or even three or all the four of these freedoms is again a matter of freedom. An open society then cannot shut out any one person or a body of persons from pursuing and getting the best in each. But as it can be seen, this recognizes the metaphysical right to be free and individual and the metaphysical truth of pluralism.
However individualistic and pluralistic the above view might be, the ancient aim has been to recognize that in respect of society the freedom or right are not to be entirely separated from the fact of brotherhood or social identity-of interest between members which makes the exercise of a right conditional on the possibility of equal exercise of other's rights or freedoms. This is a Dharma or law or the expression of justice. Social rights then demand firstly an obligation to respect other's rights and indeed the framework of these rights get concrete sanction and reality in the context of societal organisation. Secondly there is always in the social context an attempt to hedge in this right or rights by imposing the obligation to exercise these rights. Being natural they will be exercised; but if any element of coercion in any manner either as duty or obligation be entertained it is clear that rights turn out to be not freedoms but otherwise. It is this element that is sought to be carefully avoided by those who see that rights cannot be made to be exercised and one cannot be compelled to be free, under peril of making them cynical as in Hegelian theory or dictatorial parental government.
Integral education even in the best sense cannot re enforced. Persuasion by shewing the consequences of partial choices in respect of exercise of rights and failure to grow up to realise the full meaning of the human personality and individuality alone can help the vigilance that is necessary to preserve the rights. Otherwise bare rights as demands and privileges to exist in a particular manner remain to burden the conscience of the individuals and the society. There is no easy method by which men must be made to recognize their individual destiny or their trans-societal nature in society and it is not a wise way to shew that individuals are just societal and their rights exist only in and for the society as such.
Rights of human beings as individuals however have been fought for, though in each case one had to fight against one's own rules who did not have the vision or capacity to liberate men from their servitude. Wars have hardly been fought for the individual liberty, or for the realization of his perfection. They have been fought for property through plunder, pleasures through reduction and rape, and have established slavery of the conquered rather than freedom. The recent world wars
however have ostensibly for the rights of small nations and for the rights of oppressed peoples. Man is coming to his own thanks to the work done by the revolutionaries of the earlier centuries. However the individuals who have carried our these wars and the leaders who are governing the nation have not quite abjured the ways of war. It is surely to Gandhiji who had seen more clearly than the Christian nations that we owe a new technique of persuasion and conquest of men to ideas is taking place. It is surely again, a great idea to resolve to settle all differences at every level by means of consultation and discussion, by exchange cordially of opinions and to have given this a forum. The United Nations organization can be said to be the first concrete realisation of the idea of Reason. Here again it is not like a debating society and so on which lead to dialectical solutions. It is deep concern for the ordinary human being and his intrinsic value, whatever his present condition in the social and national and racial context may be, that has made and will make that organization a true conscience of human growth and destiny all the world over. It is again a great recognition that this concept of human rights is indivisible, and
wherever there is the negation of this, there is already a great possibility of that disease becoming rampant. There is thus, great truth in our discovering thanks to the unification of mankind that the pluralism of the individuals does not fact entail their indivisibility. Not merely man cannot suffer abridgment of his own freedom he becomes the champion and fighter or the same freedom from abridgment of others rights as well. This concept of indivisibility is essential for the realization of human unity. A Government which therefore suffers the abridgment of the right of any one of its citizens indeed is under a grave responsibility to restore that to him or else persuade him to see that such an abridgment is lost in so far as it has entailed a transgression or trespass into other person's rights. Mankind has to be educated, persuaded, both by press and practice of its leaders to see that theirs is a right way of exercising a right and wrong way of exercising it and raising the conscience of each person to the perception of justice or dharma. A dharma rajya then can succeed in these democratic only by the members of the society being cultivated in the knowledge of equality and brotherhood. A spiritual education can
reveal the axiom of equality in a better way than other positive sciences. But then what with the divergences in the notion of our individual destiny or salvation, here or beyond, we are hardly in a position to deliver the goods.
Great civilizations it is seen, express an idea. Our modern age is also said to be the age of ideology. Communism is said to be an ideological movement as a counter attack against Absolutism. The pluralistic note of communism very early was given up in favour of class patterns of organization which alone grant power to coerce. Indeed communism speaks about its liberating mission. However it can only end up in making liberty a mockery- at least the means do not show any sign of leading up to the end. Any return to ancient patterns of thought cannot throw up a galvanizing idea that will create a new society, instead of a new social class, that is about similar with earlier patterns of the past. New names do not alter our difficulties, though they may be intended to deceive. The new idea that man has to realise and make as his guide in his social and individual life so as to evolve to higher levels of his own existence - whatever that might be must then spring up from the hearts of saints of
mankind, rather than from the heads of its philosophers. For it is indeed significant that the great political leaders of the U.N.O have always appealed to the significant words of the great spiritual leaders of mankind Christ, Buddha, Confucius, Mohammed and Lord Krishna. Again we turn to the eternal message delivered in diverse parts of the globe that was distant to them but so very closely brought together by science to throw up a deep and significant message for man so that he may evolve into a universal man, a true citizen of the free world, and proclaim the oneness of mankind and his freedom.
MEANING OF HISTORY
Is there meaning for or in History?
Is it discernable in the mere march of events or facts or is it something that a mind prone to generalisations like science sees in this march of events: A science of History would perhaps help to reveal the meaning of History. The meaning of science for most lies in its discoveries of laws which help prediction about the future. There are many who deny this scientific determinism in History. Science in physical life is possible-perhaps with the help of statistical probabilities even other natural sciences could progress; in the field where matter is like money and power (artha sastra) the sciences could progress very well. But it is very doubtful whether in the fields of psychology that deal with spiritual activities, of ends that transcend the terrestrial scheme even though COMPLETE
operating in the context of this terrestrial scheme there can be any science in the sense of physical and natural sciences.
Let us note that Aristotle in the West classically stated the types of causes which operate on the events of every day. He listed four types of causes: the material, the formal, the efficient and the final. Science most often deals with the first and is content to observe and deal with the uniformity of causes and effects, their identities and similarities. The second, formal cause is of the form of ideas, patterns of making which are not in matter but are introduced into it and this is done in a mechanical conception by an agent in whose mind the forms are in clear form. The potter knows what form of pot he wants and gives this form to matter (silver or brass or clay). The form is the idea which is introduced into the scheme. In our own conceptions a plan is the idea which has to be executed in the material of the people. Thus an intellectual being capable of having ideas introduces or works this form into matter very much like a jeweller. But in organic life where the idea is unconsciously held it is seen to manifest itself in terms of adaptation of the environment to man’s needs
or life's needs, even if this need be just survival. The inner movement towards having a different form in order to survive is the life. This same formal force operates through the efficient causality of life in the lives of social groups leading up to the concept of mobility (social and cultural). Natural mobility is the efficient causality operating in and through diverse instrumentations, organic and inorganic, and this is the third kind of causality that Aristotle mentioned. In Nyaya we call this causality nimitta karana. But nimitta is also an ambiguous word; it suggests also the reason for occasion for causality or causal activity. This brings us to the final causes or goals for which the idea is devised, matter shaped and modified continuously and new tools improvised to bring about the desired forms suitable to fulfilling the ends or goals of man.
The proper understanding of these four causes which in fact are all necessary for any explanation or meaning of any emergence or result is a basic necessity. If we can show that History, that is the march of humanity through the ages starting with its emergence from a lower level being to the present day, has a goal, that goal would throw light on the progress
of movement down the ages: if we cannot see this or discern this goal in and through the process we can hardly speak of any progress at all for progress is a relative term, meaningful in terms of its approach towards the realization of the goal. In fact the word evolution itself is a relative concept dependent upon the goal of life--quite arbitrarily it is held that evolution is a process by which homogeneity leads up to heterogeneity-the unicellular organism becomes a multi-cellular organism--diversity leads to the fullness of unity whilst yet maintaining the unity in a different form than oneness, is said to be a fair enough description. So too the Monolithic society of the family with unity and identities of blood gets diversified so much as to attain the goal of a pluralistic democratic society. Every attempt at paternalistic government by Dictatorship is a regressive feature which is rejected by the evolutionary nisus, Thus we can find that history to be meaningful must have a glimpse of the human destiny or else it can be but a serious catalogue of events which have nothing to link them up except chronology, or time. But even time begins with us with an event: a group of planets in a particular house (e.g. astagrahakuta) or the
Birth or Death of a great individual (Krsna or Rama or Buddha or Christ or Mohammed or any other) or a great catastrophe like the Flood. Thus its impact on humanity in the shaping of man’s terrestrial activities is a notable date. But by itself either one should trace history as an unfolding of that idea through time and give an appraisal or historical judgment about its realisation or progress or it should discover how that idea finds its impediments and halts and diversions and collapse.
A philosopher of history could proceed to see in the large canvas of centuries how the Idea however conceived at the beginning by humanity as a whole or in a segment of it flows out inevitably and is determined by a suprahuman elan towards its realization in the homo sapiens and homo faber. But what is less realized is that this process or movement is motivated towards a goal that is incapable of being discerned in the process according to some, and capable of being discerned by others. Those who discern it are those who see life as a whole and steadily, sub specie eterni-- they can be called the Rsis (tri-kalajnas) and Platonists or Utopians if you please. The others are those who see little purpose and their realizations but cannot see a
goal of History as a whole.
The two kinds of philosophers of History can be called the Platonic and the Bergsonian. The former holds the goal to be the Realisation of the Ultimate Idea - Harmony and all Beatitude and Society (Sangha), but the latter holds that the future is open, unpredictable, immense novelty deriving its new shapes by that ever present inexhaustible spiritual mobility. The future is for ever bringing forth novelty (navo navo bhavati). Bergson in fact contends that the impulse towards unity that philosophers discern in history, as the goal of mankind, is not at the end but at the beginning itself. One unitary force or elan winds its way up and down creating matter, life and mind and urging itself on towards the shaping of the gods or supermen. Thus a philosophy of history based on the theory of a sub specie eterni vision (kranta darsana) is not correct and leads to such pessimistic views of history as that of Spengler and others. But this Bergsonian theory lacks the spirit of Real idea which in fact dimly, unconsciously, subconsciously urges the life itself towards its enhancement and transformation even up to the point of its own decease (death). That the infinite
versatility and creative inventiveness and planning of Spirit is available for it in freedom shows that freedom itself exhibits itself in and through all the self-determinations that it makes.
It was Van Hartmann who held that for our human mentality the process of history is irrational and works through much violent dissipation of energies and absolutely ceaseless bunglings. It is part of chance play and adaptation vigilant towards new situations. There is obviously nothing uniform in nature, a success in one sphere is no guarantee it would help success elsewhere or else whence. History being an irrational endeavour to seek scientific law or philosophic meaning in it is meaningless. The irrational qua irrational is meaningless. George Trevalyn therefore refused to think that history is meaningful. In fact a scientist of history would refuse to consider final causes and devote himself to discovering just those uniformities which recur again and again. Such a view that might emerge if one were partially scientific in so far as the final causes are ruled out as in the consideration of natural sciences - might lead to a statement of a theory of eternal recurrence. In fact the survey by Professor
Toynbee of the rise and fall of civilizations would give the first impression that there is continuous recurrence in history as fact: indeed one seems to recall Caesar in Napoleon, and Alexander in others. History repeats itself. There is the large cycle of the order of birth, growth and decline and death; and another civilization is born elsewhere not always on the ashes of the former repeating the same curve of evolution and decline – and committing the same mistakes. There were always the ages of growth and enthusiasm and decline of morals and increase of cupidity and hedonism. Though many might have forgotten the historian Freud. He almost in the same terms as Hayek (the author of Roads to Serfdom) enumerated the parallels between the ancient Roman Empire and the British Empire (vide his Life of Caesar Julius). One seems to be seeing the same phenomenon over again even in one’s own lifetime, and a sense of reminiscence seems to grasp our thought and makes us deeply moved by pessimism. Even the graphic histories of Gibbon and Carlyle are just deep penetrative insights into this truth of eternal recurrence. In fact Ouspensky claimed that this recurrence is a fact that makes it
rather pessimistic. But he himself pointed out that there are certain circumstances that lead to the breaking up of this cycle of eternal recurrence at each level of being.
I think that the element of transcendence over this cycle of existence, punar-janma-jara-marana, has been the most important concept of Indian thought. They found that in the Itihasas and Puranas this eternal cycle is prevalent at all levels. No one transcends his level of being, as a materialist, or hedonist or politician unless he is able to get a new force introduced into his consciousness by way of a spiritual initiation that leads to his abandonment of the old goals. This theory of eternal recurrence is also known in Buddhism as the law of dependent causation, pratitya samutpada - this being that arises in a chain. We can well discern the principle of Rake’s progress in this chain. This is the general law of life at each level. This chain is available even in respect of cosmic events like rain as the Vedas have enunciated. Even the gods are not free from the deterministic chain, but they have the capacity to pass from one chain to another. Conceive of a spiral and a circle concentric and the transition from one to the other by a leap, but it is leap secured by an upward pull
rather than a push from below. Ouspensky showed by a diagram that in the ordinary circle that goes round – the going in one direction results in finding oneself moving in the opposite direction – though subjectively yet moving in the same direction. Thus when man thinks that he is progressing, others would find him moving in the opposite direction. It is doubtless true that this is the law of degeneration or regression or retrograde movement in all circular orbits. Seizing this principle Professor Toynbee assumed that the uplift of several civilizations is by a shift of the orbit from one to another higher up spiralling above the lower and in one sense apparently reflecting the stages of the lower. The March of Civilizations has been achieved along with the recurrence but developing a new meaning because of the introduction of new values however subtle. But as most people can grasp the lower rather than the higher, there happens the fact of considering that one is higher when in fact one is lower, and vice versa - that one is yet in the lower cycle or circle or orbit when actually one is in the higher level.
The new world has always the characteristic of being new because of the introduction of a higher
consciousness. In our Indian tradition, this introduction of a higher level consciousness takes place by the descent of the Divine Consciousness to that level and lifting up creatures from their lower circular orbit and giving them or placing them in a higher evolutionary orbit. This shift of orbit is not automatic movement but a conscious or super-conscious function which may be called the Deity. Professor Alexander almost suggested this emergence of the Deity in his magnum opus Space, Time and Deity. The higher elevation of the evolutionary species has been rendered possible by the descent of the avataras of different level consciousnesses, such as, the matsya, kurma, varaha, narasimha, Vamana, Parasurama; Kakutsa, Rama and Krsna (Bala-Rama) and so on. This shift of levels is a phenomenon of utmost historical evolution not only of animals and other life but of humanity as well. The four ages of humanity, the four asramas, the four castes and the quadruples of Indian thought really must be interpreted in terms of the orbits and key points of orbits where a passage could open up to the higher or would open up then. The secret of this ascending ladder to terrains higher is a closed one to those who have not
arrived at the fitness for the evolutionary ascent as well: wherever men have refused to see beyond or become aware of the terrible determinism that stalks all cyclic movements depending upon repetitive adaptive behaviour (pratitya-samutpada). Nature is a field of freedom as well as necessity. Human history is a series of attempts to develop and integrate its freedom and as such it moves forwards through all martyrdom towards the realization of freedom. History in fact seen from one point of view and that is the legitimate and spiritual point of view is the great and glorious revelation and assertion of freedom in all facets of existence, in society, culture, art and music and it reveals itself as the creativity at the back of spirituality. There can hardly be any spirituality or spirit without this manifest creativity of freedom; a freedom that uses destruction itself for a new creation when it cannot break through recalcitrant nature. One shapes a bangle by melting gold since the nugget cannot itself be turned into a bangle and so also man himself will be broken and moulded into, a higher type by the Visvakarma if he refuses to move. It is stated in a Pauranika story that when some gods refused to
incarnate they were made to take birth at a lower level and assist a higher evolution in those with whom their lots were cast. Nobody can resist the call of freedom and a freedom for all and it is an eternal process and therefore just as every rose at every dawn and its blossoming is beautiful the inward surge for real in the intensity of that hour, so too freedom in each individual heart demands the making of history of the eternal which freedom alone can envisage if it can. Since our freedom is only an expression not of our creativity but an ecstasy of getting our of the wheel of becoming, the orbit of the lower order values and existence, it does not fully comprehend that this freedom is but a possibility for creative being though it may turn out in lesser men a curse leading one into deeper darknesses than the previous. Spiritual History as Berdyeav averred is basically internal, and so does Sri Aurobindo hold it: it is that which grows in freedom and is nourished by it: it not only tries to keep up its freedom by creative activity but proceeds to expand the frontiers of freedom for all because of the oneness of Reality. All histories are parts of one Universal history as man understands it and comprehends it. In fact spiritual history might be
asserted to be trans-historical or ahistorical. But it is not so. There is no antithesis between the historical and the transcendental spiritual. The historical in a sense may be said to be the external expression of the internal spiritual. The quality of the spiritual is not entirely absent from the historical: in fact there are moments in history when the quality of spirit, as seen in the efflorescent periods of creative art and inventiveness and appearance of geniuses or heroes, is present in all its parts. The degradation of historical significance arises from the weakening of the spiritual through the mechanisation and materialisation of spirit. This weakening process has to be constantly or vigilantly arrested and reversed: but it is a fact that this has been done in previous epochs only by heroes and geniuses, avataras and rsis seized with cosmic purpose and spirituality. In our own time the birth of the great men (mahatmas) of global perceptions, and insights and urges of penetrating spirituality, e.g., Mahatma Gandhi, Svami Vivekananda, Sri Aurobindo, and others less known but not less significant to human evolution has signalized the advent of a new age, opening up new dimensions of spirituality. But it would be foolish to
Om Tat Sat