The Life Divine By Sri Aurobindo: The Supreme Truth Consciousness

This post has my personal notes and reflections of the chapter called The Supreme Truth Consciousness from the The Life Divine written  by Sri Aurobindo.

We spoke of the Supermind as the creator before. The Supermind is everything in one sense. What does this mean?

  • This means that the Supermind is in everything.
  • This also means that everything is in the Supermind.
  • This also means that everything is the Supermind.

If we want to represent this in a picture it will look like this:

Supermind and Everything

We should not make the mistake that  Supermind or God is only impersonal. Supermind is Being and Non-Being at the same time. We shall not go into this now. But it is important to remember this.

Now since Supermind is in everything, everything is in Supermind and everything is Supermind, the whole creation and its various manifestations are harmonious even if we cannot realise it in the present state of our mind and consciousness. Each manifestation when it is created has within it the seed, the direction and the destination embedded in it.

So when we talk of Time, we talk of the past, the future and the present. This is a divisive way of thinking. In reality it is all the Supermind and it is the Divine who is looking at in this way through Mind. Similarly when we talk of Space, we talk of divisions between one thing and the other. In reality it is all the Supermind and it is the Divine who is looking at it in this way through the Mind. Mind measures Time by event and Space by matter. But if we can look at it from another time point, Time is eternal present and Space is the eternal Being. The mind cannot view things of the world this way because it will accept only what is true to the senses and mind and these are beyond mind.

This can be illustrated as in the picture below:

Time, Space and Mind,Supermind


So the supermind or the Divine creates everything, everything contains the Divine, the Divine contains everything and ultimately everything is Divine. That is the reason why everything in this world can do intelligent things. It is not the mind that is the cause of this intelligence. It is this Divine or Supermind. In the animal and the plant it is subconscious and in man it is half-conscious. But it is this which enables us to do the intelligent things. The mind is a reflection of this consciousness, it just follows the Divine in its deepest aspect.

  • In the consciousness of the mind: the knower, known and knowledge are different
  • In the consciousness of the Supermind: the knower, known and knowledge are one.

If we think about ourselves we can reason this out, although mentally we cannot use it in a practical sense. In Sri Aurobindo’s words:

In reality, I the knower am the consciousness which knows; the knowledge is that consciousness, myself, operating; the known is also myself, a form or movement of the same consciousness. The three are clearly one existence, one movement, indivisible though seeming to be divided, not distributed between its forms although appearing to distribute itself and to stand separate in each. But this is a knowledge which the mind can arrive at, can reason out, can feel, but cannot readily make the practical basis of its intelligent operations.

And if we have to know this about others, it becomes very difficult. It is like we know the earth moves around the sun intellectually, but for practical purposes we only know the sun moves around the earth as we see it. On the other hand, the Supermind can practically see the earth moving around the sun. That is the difference and the difference is enormous.

When a seed becomes a tree, we say the seed develops into the tree and explain the relationship as such. We view the seed and the tree as separate. Even if we say the seed has a soul and it develops into a tree with a soul which is the same, we view the seed and the tree as separate forms. In the same way our Mind views forms as separate forms.In the view of the Supermind, it is different. We view the seed and the tree as the Divine and can see it both as the Divine, the Divine in both and the Divine creating both. In Aurobindo’s words:

In this comprehensive knowledge there is no independent centre of existence, no individual separated ego such as we see in ourselves; the whole of existence is to its self-awareness an equable extension, one in oneness, one in multiplicity, one in all conditions and everywhere. Here the All and the One are the same existence; the individual being does not and cannot lose the consciousness of its identity with all beings and with the One Being; for that identity is inherent in supramental cognition, a part of the supramental self-evidence.

“Brahman is in all things, all things are in Brahman, all things are Brahman” is the triple formula of the comprehensive Supermind, a single truth of self-manifestation in three aspects which it holds together and inseparably in its self-view as the fundamental
knowledge from which it proceeds to the play of the cosmos.

So how does our view of the universe: Mind, Life and Matter come about?

Supermind into soul

There are two things that happens: multiplicity and concentration of consciousness unequally as the soul. This soul as long as it is anchored to the Supermind and acts in the Supermind, there is no ignorance. But if the soul starts to think of itself as the knower and makes a difference between itself, the force it uses to create something and the object it creates, then it has gone away from the Supermind. It starts to have its own mental reactions and sees difference between itself and others. But if it is anchored in the Divine, then it still has the Truth-consciousness. It is at this point where the Truth-consciousness lapses into division and ignorance that needs to be studied to find the root of the Mind.


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