Someone asked the question in a comment on this blog, “If one is automatically going to obtain knowledge by following the spiritual path, why should we read books and create stress in the body? Why bother? Why not just sleep well and be relaxed?” People in spiritual communities sometimes tend to deprecate the intellect (and consequently, intellectuals) because the scriptures state that the intellect is a creator of illusions and has to be transcended in order to experience the Spirit which pervades the universe. The question raised above calls for a nuanced understanding of the felicitous role played by the intellect in the often-misunderstood “spiritual path”.
The Divine Will is an elusive thing for sure. The religious preacher confuses his strong beliefs with the Divine Will, the despot attributes his success to it’s action, and spiritual aspirant is supposed to surrender to it. Does any such thing as the Divine Will really exist? How can one recognize it ? The Divine Will does exist because there is a teleological purpose in evolution. Every soul is being led to the Truth through a certain line of evolution, seemingly haphazardly, and it is this Divine Will which subtly goads him to progress forward. Ordinarily, the Divine Will remains concealed due to our ignorance of our true nature but it begins to unveil itself as we gradually erase the ego through Yoga and allied occult-spiritual practices.
The ordinary human mind interfaces with the phenomenal world through abstractions; with the aid of the senses, it builds a representation of the world in the human memory which it manipulates with the reasoning process, rejecting and accepting ideas based on the ego’s subjective inclinations. The nature of the thought process changes as the mind becomes electrified with progress in Yoga. The practice of mental silence heightens the vibratory pitch of the brain and the awakening of the Kundalini kindles subtle centers in the brain. The mind expands into the cosmic planes of the Mind and acquires new powers of consciousness. In such a mind, the memory of the past is purged, the reasoning process is replaced by spontaneous intuition, and the abstractions within are substituted by a more intimate knowledge acquired by direct contact of subject consciousness with object consciousness.
This article is related to the previous article “Four Powers of Intuition“
The source of all Knowledge is the Superconscient; it is the reservoir of all creativity – the source of all inventions, paintings, musical compositions. In contrast, the source of all Ignorance is our limited consciousness which is only aware of its identity as the physical body in the physical world. Every problem we face is the result of a deformation of some underlying Truth and the Intuition required to solve a problem can be found by bridging this gap between Ignorance and Knowledge, by ascending and widening our consciousness so we can become aware of our larger Self. When we ascend into this wider consciousness, we also find ourselves crowned with the power of Intuition.
Many of us have at times felt those influences and inspirations which express themselves through us as scientific breakthroughs, poetic verses, stirring musical compositions or great works of art. According to Sri Aurobindo, these moments of inspiration are actually the secret workings of the four powers called Revelation, Inspiration, Intuition and Discrimination. These powers can be consciously cultivated through the practice of Integral Yoga. This post describes these four powers.