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TitleConsciousness and its Transformation Sri Aurobindo's contribution
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Consciousness and its Transformation



Matthijs Cornelissen: -- Introduction


Section One: Integral psychology

A. S. Dalal: -- Reversal of consciousness, thoughts on the psychology of the new birth

Integral psychology, metaphors and processes of personal integration

Savitri, a key to Sri Aurobindo’s psycho-cosmology


Section Two: Integral psychotherapy

Brant Cortright: -- Integral psychotherapy as existential Vedanta

Alok Pandey: -- Practical aspects of integral psychotherapy

Soumitra Basu: -- Integral psychotherapy: personal encounters

Michael Miovic: -- Towards a spiritual psychology: bridging psychodynamic psychotherapy
with integral yoga


Section Three: Integral yoga and the Indian tradition

Arabinda Basu: -- Sri Aurobindo’s metaphysical psychology: a brief introduction

Chote Narayan Sharma: -- Consciousness and its transformation

Ananda Reddy: -- Vedantic yoga-psychology

Vladimir: -- Sanjnana, ajnana, vijnana, prajnana

Aster Patel: -- Working in Matter

Section Four: Modern psychology and spirituality

S. Narayanan: -- The probabilistic orientation

George Mathew: -- Models of consciousness and its transformation

Jane Henry: -- Developing creativity

S. K. Kiran Kumar: -- Contextual approach to meditation and integral psychology

K. Krishna Mohan: -- Spirituality and well-being: an overview

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group by moving away from the group periodically, learn new languages to come out of
cultural conditioning and practise passive morality (honesty, dependability, etc.) to develop
S. He may also need externalized ceremonial forms of religion for control. A person with
high A should practice active morality (channellise his energies through social service
activities) and gradually replace religious practices like ordinary prayer which partly reinforce
insecurity, by the practice of mindfulness. Counselling and psychotherapy have become very
popular in competitive A societies because of the need for social interaction to convert
competitiveness to cooperation through personal interaction for growth. Meditation (direct
increase of pure awareness) is the most important practice for an S person to increase S.
Progress from high S to SS very often is by insight and not the result of any intentional, linear
or effortful process. Existential questions arise naturally in the mind of a high S person
leading to either gradual or sudden disappearance of self-processes. A high S person, as a
result of the high degree of self-sufficiency, also reaches the “break off” point where he
transcends the dependence on most of the conditions for the maintenance and
development of personality. For example, he may be able to break off totally from society
and live in a cave, without losing any S.

Figure 3. Model of personal growth


Personal growth essentially involves improving and purifying the vibrational quality of mind.
Deliberately digging up the past (e.g.. reliving traumatic experiences) is not only
unnecessary, but can even be harmful also. However, often there may be spontaneous
revival of forgotten incidents when one gains stability and has the capacity to review them
straight. Repression and dramatic revival of forgotten memories, however, occurs only for
people with too much I in their root personality. Similarly deliberate cathartic exercises also
can be harmful as they may strengthen the wrong kind of emotions. Spontaneous catharsis
may occur when the personality changes as result of more acceptable naturalistic practices
like cultivation of awareness.

The quality of mind (in terms of the constituents I, A and S) are influenced by a large number
of factors which can be classed into physical factors (closeness to nature, climate, food,
exercise), social factors (population density, closeness to man's natural social environment,
etc.), and psychological factors (degree of right company of right type of people, right type
of social interaction, degree of availability of right extent of privacy, etc.). In fact any
condition, influence or response makes for a change in personality in terms of I and A, or S.
The integral yoga of Sri Aurobindo can be regarded as a holistic attempt at personal growth.
Yoga involves a world view, a way of life, a style of life and an integral attempt to improve all
aspects of one's life and environment. This involves identifying those aspects needing more
attention and more emphasis at any point of time at a given level of growth. Reduction of I

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and A leads to increased S which is greater awareness and this awareness is awareness of
one's total self (pure consciousness) and its transformation across all the different planes.
The Sreechakra (traditional diagram) is a model of this awareness.


Figure 4. Sree chakra


The dot at the centre signifies pure consciousness. The diagram also brings out the holistic
interconnected nature of personality or transformation across various planes as we move
from the innermost point of pure consciousness to the outermost physical plane.

Mathew, V. George (1995). IAS Rating Scale . Department of Psychology, University of Kerala.
Mathew, V. George (1997). Integrative Psychology . Department of Psychology, University of Kerala.
Mathew, V. George (2001). “Mind in Integrative Psychology”. In V.M.D. Namboodiri (Ed.), Perspective on Mind.

Gyan Publishing House, New Delhi.

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founded not on a physical need, a vital desire or mental idea, but a spiritual vision of
equality and unity-in-diversity...

Seeing the ego, the Ignorance, underlying the need for 'my' security...

Seeing the ego, the Ignorance, underlying the desire for economic and political power for
'my' country...

Seeing the ego, the Ignorance, underlying even the ideal of peace, harmony and
collaboration for 'my' people...

Recognizing the incompatibility of the needs, desires and ideals as they presently stand;
looking for the underlying Truth, in the light of a spiritual vision...

Recognizing that a spiritual homeland, in the world as it is, requires stable physical

Recognizing that economic and political stability and growth are, within proper limits,
appropriate, given the current level of consciousness predominant in the world...

Recognizing that the ideal of peace is a high ideal, however far beyond the current
aspirations of many, shining as a beacon of light calling forth intimations of a deeper and
truer vision....

   — Recognizing the play of universal forces, individualized as the country of Israel, seeking
to find the right Dharma, the right way, to become not just unified for the sake of 'our
people' but in harmony and collaboration with the greater World-play.

c) Looking with the innermost consciousness

Moving in this critical era of transition and transformation from the separative egoism of
nation-states and international institutions, a greater Force bringing out hidden conflicts,
apparent incompatibilities to foster an ultimate Divine unity.... Israel as one Centre of
Wisdom and Love; with its own Swadharma, its own way of being and true nature
manifesting out of the current surface conflicts and disunity; the Time-Spirit calling for the
emergence of a deeper consciousness in order to manifest a true Divine harmony and
unity amongst human beings.



The Mother's exercise for reviewing the day in the light of the soul

If this reviewing is to make you progress, you must find something within you in
whose light you can be yourself your own judge, something which represents for
you the best part of yourself, which has some light, some goodwill and which
precisely is in love with progress. Place that before you and first pass across it as in a
cinema all that you have done, all that you have felt, your impulses, your thoughts,
etc.; then try to coordinate them, that is, find out why this has followed that. Look at
the luminous screen that is before you: certain things pass by well, without throwing

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a shadow; others, on the contrary, throw a little shadow; others yet cast a shadow
altogether black and disagreeable. you must do this very sincerely, as though you
were playing a game: under such circumstances I did such and such a thing, feeling
like this and thinking in this way; I have before me my ideal of knowledge and
selfmastery, well, was this act in keeping with my ideal or not? If it was, it would not
leave any shadow on the screen, which would remain transparent, and one would
not have to worry about it. If it is not in conformity, it casts a shadow. Why has it left
this shadow? What was there in this act that was contrary to the will to selfknowledge
and selfmastery?


Most often you will find that it corresponds to unconsciousness —then you file it
among unconscious things and resolve that next time you will try to be conscious
before doing anything. But in other cases you will see that it was a nasty little
egoism, quite black, which had come to distort your action or your thought. Then
you place this egoism before your 'light' and ask yourself: 'Why has it the right to
make me act like that, think like that...' And instead of accepting any odd explanation
you must search and you will find in a corner of your being something which thinks
and says, 'Ah, no, I shall accept everything but that.' You will see that it is a petty
vanity, a movement of selflove, an egoistic feeling hidden somewhere, a hundred
things. Then you take a good look at these things in the light of your ideal: 'Is
cherishing this movement in conformity with my seeking and the realization of my
ideal or not? I put this little dark corner in front of the light until the light enters into it
and it disappears.' Then the comedy is over. But the comedy of your whole day is
not finished yet, you know, for there are many things which have to pass thus before
the light. But if you continue this game—for truly it is a game, if you do this sincerely—
I assure you that in six months you will not recognize yourself, you will say to
yourself, 'What? I was like that! It is impossible!'

You may be five years old or twenty, fifty or sixty and yet transform yourself in this
way by putting everything before this inner light. You will see that the elements
which do not conform with your ideal are not generally elements which you have to
throw wholly out of yourself (There are very few of this kind); they are simply things
not in their place. If you organize everything—your feelings, your thoughts, your
impulses, etc.—around the psychic centre which is the inner light, you will see that all
inner discord will change into a luminous order.

It is quite evident that if a similar procedure were adopted by a nation or by the
earth, most of the things which make men unhappy would disappear, for the major
part of the world's misery comes from the fact that things are not in their place. If life
were organized in such a way that nothing was wasted and each thing was in its
place, most of these miseries would not exist any longer. An old sage has said:

'There is no evil. There is only a lack of balance.

'There is nothing bad. Only things are not in their place.'

  If everything were in its place, in nations, in the material world, in the actions and
thoughts and feelings of individuals, the greater part of human suffering would

  The Mother,

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