Archive for January 2013
Posted January 30, 2013on:
The characteristic action of the typal formation, or even the individual action within the type, is not the entire picture of the universal manifestation. There is also the evolutionary power of the will of the Spirit that manifests through Nature. There is a continuous unfolding and development and this lends to the individual soul, as representative and portion of the Spirit, the ability to change. While the action of Karma, as a law of energy in Nature, will bring results forward, the individual soul has the choice of action, reaction, response and development that can make an enormous difference over time in the ongoing process.
Sri Aurobindo describes this process: “His nature is what it is because he has so made it by his past; he has induced this present formulation by a precedent will in his spirit.”
“He has developed by his own long evolution of that humanity the…
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Posted January 19, 2013on:
While we can recognize that the mental viewpoint that associates our actions with moral or ethical consequences does not appear to be entirely correct, it is nevertheless a fact that there must be some underlying truth to which our viewpoint is connected, however distorted or incomplete our current view may be. Sri Aurobindo undertakes a review of the laws of Nature as we can understand them to help sort out this underlying truth from the accretions of the mental and vital nature which may distort it.
“First, it is sure that Nature has laws of which the observance leads to or helps well-being and of which the violation imposes suffering; but all of them cannot be given a moral significance. Then there is the certainty that there must be a moral law of cause and consequence in the total web of her weaving and this we would perhaps currently put…
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Posted January 18, 2013on:
The popular notion of the law of Karma implies that somehow our human conception of justice in return for our actions is expanded, extended and fulfilled in the cosmic law. We see however that in various cultures, at various points of time, there are different views about “right and wrong” and different implementations of justice. Clearly we cannot simply extrapolate our human notions and overlay them onto the entire cosmic existence.
We may see this tendency as another example of our anthropocentric tendencies; that is, we always try to place ourselves at the center of the universe and judge everything by our limited viewpoint. This tendency used to hold that the earth was at the center of the universe, and that the sun revolved around the earth. We now know that such conceptions are inaccurate and a reflection of the limitations of human perception and understanding, rather than a true…
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Posted January 14, 2013on:
Perhaps the most intriguing questions for most of us are those that relate to the operation of the law of Karma. We want Karma to conform to our mental notions of right and wrong, or to fit within a pattern that satisfies our desires. We expect to find some kind of “legal system” that operates the law of Karma and to find thereby that our moral, ethical, religious or mental notions are supported and justified by the action of Karma.
The law of Karma however is not a law framed by the mind of man, but a law of the Spirit that has manifested the complexity and subtlety of the entire creation. Sri Aurobindo describes the framework of Karma: “The law of Karma can be no rigid and mechanical canon or rough practical rule of thumb, but rather its guiding principle should be as supple a harmonist as the Spirit…
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Sri Aurobindo has identified a persistent principle of the manifestation that becomes ever more apparent as we ascend the scale of consciousness, and that is the principle of “uniqueness” which is intimately bound up with the necessity of rebirth. It is in the end, the uniqueness of the individual that presents the hidden thread of development that cannot be accomplished through one lifetime. We see the start of the differentiation process as the unity of the life force begins to develop into different species of plant and animal life, what we might consider to be the development of a group consciousness that manifests characteristics that are unique compared to other species. Eventually, however, we see the further development, particularly as the principle of Mind takes hold, of unique individuals within the group who begin to develop and express characteristics that make that individual different from the rest of the common…
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We are born into the world as children of our parents, carrying with us a physical heritage from our ancestors which is called heredity. These traits are passed along in the DNA transmitted from the parents, and combined according to the dominant or recessive characteristics of the particular genetic interactions. This process therefore provides a basis for the continuity of the physical framework of our lives from generation to generation. The ability for genetic material to combine and create new combinations through the contribution of the two parents provides an enormous potential capability for individuation and new development in the newly born child.
This process of heredity, however, is not the sole factor in determining our lives. Once born into the world, we interact with an environment consisting of both the world at large, and the other beings with whom we interact. We are both influenced, and in our turn…
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Once we recognize a law of Karma, a sequence of cause and effect, we come reasonably quickly to the conclusion that it can only have a real meaning within the context of multiple births. Similarly if we start from the concept of rebirth, we find that there must be some linking between the births that provides significance as well, and this linking is the “law of Karma”. Either way, we find that the one concept requires the other.
We see around us an ordered universe, with subtlety and inter-related and inter-operable parts that clearly are part of some larger whole, both in terms of the universal manifestation and in terms of the sequence of actions over time. Such an organization speaks to a creative Intelligence and a pattern to the manifestation which implies meaning and significance, not a chaotic wild dream sequence or some kind of illusory existence.
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