Sri Aurobindo was a political and social rebel and in the
process of his transformation to a
sage delineated highly inspiring supramental pathways to the future and Indian resurgence.
Why is it that of all the great civilisations that arose on
this planet 5000-7000 years ago, it is perhaps the Indian civilisation alone
that has continued unbroken down the long and tortuous corridors of time? There were other great civilisations that were even older, with magnificent structures and ruins, but these civilisations have disappeared. It is India alone and, to some extent China, that has maintained this continuity. The reason seems to lie in two remarkable facts.
First, there has been a spiritual and philosophical foundation for Indian culture provided by the Vedas, Upanishads or the Vedanta that has sustained Indian culture even in the most terrible and tragic circumstances. This has constantly given Indian culture the capacity for regeneration and renewal over time.
Second, a series of great men and women have articulated these truths. These philosophical truths are not merely intellectual constructs, but have been an inspiration for people in their daily lives. If one looks at Indian history from the very dawn of civilisation, one will constantly see this phenomenon of challenge and response - the Vedas, the Upanishads, the great teachings of Mahavira and Buddha, the South Indian acharyas, the Bhakti movement in the medieval times, and even down to the present age, there have been a series of resurgence, as it were. The latest one is known as the Indian renaissance, which began in the nineteenth century and swept to a triumphant conclusion by the middle of the twentieth century.
The Indian renaissance is a very complex set of phenomena. It was triggered off largely by the British rule, and at one stage after 1857 or the "Indian mutiny", now called the "first war of independence", India lay crushed and broken at the feet of the conqueror. It appeared as if Indian culture was at last going to be extinguished. But once again the miracle of regeneration took place, and within only 90 years, from 1857 to 1947, there was a whole movement of revival and renaissance and India became free.
It is clear that all these movements had a spiritual background. Sri Aurobindo said, 'All great movements of life in India have begun with the new spiritual thought and usually a new religious activity.' To quote Jawaharlal Nehru's foreword in the author's book on Sri Aurobindo: 'It is significant to note that great political mass movements in India have had a spiritual background behind them.' The real inspiration has been spiritual. One cannot go into the details about the renaissance; there were many streams. There were the early social reformers, such as Raja Rammohan Roy, Devendranath Tagore, Kesub Chandra Sen, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, R K Bhandarkar and M G Ranade in Maharashtra, Swami Dayanand Saraswati in Punjab. There were also Orientalists, great British scholars, who made tremendous contribution to the rediscovery of our heritage, namely James Prince, Monier Williams, Sir William James and Alexander Cunningham. There were the spiritual giants as well, such as Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda and a whole group of fellow monks.
It is interesting that the renaissance in India coincided with the setting up of the Indian National Congress in 1885 by an Englishman, Allen Octavian Hume. The Indian National Congress became the main vehicle for the renaissance movement and political freedom. This political movement saw two sets of great leaders. There were the early revolutionaries, and later a set of leaders led by Mahatma Gandhi who were ultimately responsible for bringing about freedom. While the latter set is better known, it is important to remember that the foundations for Gandhiji's work were laid by the earlier stalwarts. The Congress was divided very quickly into two groups; the divisions in the Congress are not new but very old. One group was known as the moderates, among whom included Pherozeshah Mehta, Dadabhai Nauroji, Gopal Krishna Gokhale and other great but moderate people; the other group included the radicals led by Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Bipin Chandra Pal, Lala Lajpat Rai and Sri Aurobindo.
Sri Aurobindo's life can be divided into two clear phases. The first relates to political activism and the second to spiritual activism. He was born in 1872 in Calcutta. At the age of seven he was sent to study in England where he spent the next 14 years. He was a brilliant student and scholar at school and at King's College, Cambridge, where he won prizes for Greek and Latin.
While in England, he was deeply influenced by two well-known revolutionary movements. First, the Sinn Fein movement in Ireland that had spearheaded the movement for Irish freedom under Charles Parnell and Eamen de'Velara. Second, the resurgomento in Italy, the great movement for the reunification of Italy led by Matsini, Garibaldi and other great revolutionary leaders. Sri Aurobindo came under the influence of these revolutionary movements and started a society called "The Lotus and the Dagger" in Cambridge. Though he was urged by his family to take the ICS examination, luckily for all of us, he declined to do so; otherwise he would have probably ended up as a deputy commissioner of Thiruchirapalli. While this would have been good for Thiruchirapalli, India would have lost the greatest philosopher of this century.
Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad of Baroda used to visit England every year to select outstanding young people to join his service. On meeting the 20-year Sri Aurobindo he immediately offered him a job in the Baroda College. Sri Aurobindo returned to India in 1893, a year of powerful synchronisation when Swami Vivekananda sailed from east to west to attend the Chicago World Parliament of Religions, and Sri Aurobindo sailed from the west back to the east. It was also the same year when Mahatma Gandhi sailed from London to Durban to start his career.
Having returned to India to join the Baroda service, Sri Aurobindo immediately set about writing on politics. A brilliant writer, his first series of articles was published in a journal called Indu Prakash, in which he castigated the moderate leadership of the Congress. He said that their policy of prayer, petition and protest would lead nowhere. What was needed was a revolutionary movement against the British. A born revolutionary, Sri Aurobindo revolted against the British and the Congress leadership.
While writing his articles he was secretly in touch with the revolutionary movement in Bengal. The revolutionary movement was the strongest in Bengal and Maharashtra. Since Bengal was the first state to feel the impact of the British rule, the genius of the Bengali people threw up an extraordinary galaxy of outstanding spiritual, scientific, intellectual, and literary figures, many of whom were revolutionaries. Sri Aurobindo's brother Barindra Ghosh and Khudiram Bose were leaders of the revolutionary movement in Bengal. Sri Aurobindo led a double life: on the one hand, he was a professor in Baroda, while on the other hand, he was secretly in touch with revolutionary movements.
In 1905 an event occurred that changed the course of Indian history and the freedom movement. This was the Partition of Bengal by Lord Curzon, known as Banga bhanga, which immediately created a tremendous reaction in the whole of India and particularly in Bengal. The whole of Bengal galvanised into activity. Sri Aurobindo resigned his job in Baroda and moved to Calcutta. For five years, from 1905 to 1910, he shone like a meteor in the political firmament of India. His writings in Bande Mâtaram and the Karmayogin are unparalleled in their power. He became a vociferous leader of the radical movement. The Congress moved towards a split in 1906 in Calcutta. In 1907 in Surat a crisis in the Congress led to a break between the moderates and the radicals. The moderates met under Pherozeshah Mehta, while the radicals met under Sri Aurobindo's chairmanship; they continued their activities.
The British came down very heavily upon the radicals, who were hostile towards them. Sri Aurobindo was arrested in the Alipore Bomb Conspiracy Case and was sent to jail for a year in 1908. In fact, it was in jail that he had his first major spiritual experience which later changed his life; after 1910 Sri Aurobindo moved on to a new realm.
During these five years 1905-1910, he articulated a coherent and powerful theory of political action. The first part of Sri Aurobindo's message could be called spiritual nationalism that is based on two or three key concepts. The first is the concept of the nation. For Sri Aurobindo, the nation was not only a political construct, it was in fact a divinity. It was Bhavâni Bhârati, Mother India. And it was a divinity into which one had to be prepared to offer everything as a sacrifice so that one could be freed from bondage imposed by foreigners. So his fiery and flaming nationalism was because he looked upon the nation as a living goddess. In his writings, he refers to Bhavâni Mahishamardini and how the power of the people of India is expressed in terms of the great goddess. In the story of the goddess in the Puranas, all the devas pooled their weapons when they were overcome by the asuras, but could not defeat the asura individually and independently. They pooled their weapons and out of that pool of energy, the goddess arose riding on the lion with ashtâdash bhujâ, eighteen arms, each arm holding one weapon belonging to the different gods. In other words, she was the symbol of the collective aspiration and power of the Indian nation. That was his concept of the nation.
Sri Aurobindo's concept of nationalism also was not merely political activity but a great and holy yajnya, as he put it for national emancipation. Everything that was done at that time was done as an offering to the divine. That is what made a tremendously powerful impact upon the younger generation, particularly at that time. He was the first thinker in India, who had a clear appreciation of the role of the masses, and the role of the proletariat. This was in 1893, long before the Marxist-Leninist revolution in the Soviet Union. According to him the proletariat may appear to be docile and immobile, but whoever succeeds in understanding the proletariat and arousing them will be master of India's destiny. This was a very important concept, because sometimes the freedom movement has been called "bhadraloka movement" or elitist movement. Among the radical group, Sri Aurobindo was the first person to take the movement out of the drawing room and conference room on to the streets, minds and hearts of the Indian people. Previously, the moderates would draw up beautifully drafted resolutions requesting the British government to give them dominion status. That is not the way that the radicals saw it. As a radical Sri Aurobindo was the exponent of the ideological concept of the poorna swarâjya theme. As Lokmanya Tilak said, 'Swarâj is my birthright and I will have it.'
Being a political theorist and having lived for 14 years in the west, Sri Aurobindo realised that political theory without a plan of action was meaningless for the achievement of this goal. Therefore he developed a two-pronged strategy to achieve this goal. One was a link with the revolutionary movement, namely a violent revolutionary movement. There is a great difference between Sri Aurobindo and Mahatma Gandhi. Mahatma Gandhi put non-violence as an absolute factor, an absolute imperative, but this was not so with Sri Aurobindo and the radicals. Sri Aurobindo once wrote that if one's mother is being strangled and cannot breathe, then one is fully justified in using force in order to break that stranglehold upon her. Hence, Sri Aurobindo never had any hesitation about using force. While the radicals did not preach violence, the use of force as a legitimate instrument to achieve national freedom and national emancipation was justified as the basic tenets of the radicals. Sri Aurobindo was very clear that he was, in fact, the guru, the spiritual inspirer of this band of revolutionaries.
At that time the power of the state was not as overwhelming as it is today. The possibility of some kind of a revolt in the army was still possible. It must not be forgotten that 1857 had taken place only 35-40 years before all this happened. And so this was one part of his programme.
The other aspect of his strategy was an elaborate theory of boycott. The common perception is that boycott was something which Gandhiji invented. This is not true. The theory of boycott was first put forward by Sri Aurobindo in his luminous writings at the turn of the century between 1905 and 1910. He advocated economic boycott and the correlate swadeshi; educational boycott and the correlate national educational system. In fact, he was the principal of the National Education College, Jadavpur, now known as the Jadavpur University. He talked of judicial boycott and the setting up of national arbitration courts. At the same time he also referred to executive boycott and the setting up of a national organisation for self-government. As a sanction he talked of social boycott. In this way he evolved a whole theory. However, it did not work at that time, because he was far ahead of his times. It did not work but he had a complete theory of how to achieve independence. The theory revolved around the whole concept of boycott and the setting up of an alternative, not merely a negative boycott; with each negative boycott he had a positive plan as well. Consequently, his vision was a combination of remarkable idealism and a practical programme of action a very rare combination. Usually people who are idealistic have very little time for the nitty-gritty of organisation, while those involved with the organisation do not have enough time to dream. Sri Aurobindo was one of those extraordinary minds who was able to comprehend both elements of the movement.
Another point that is very important to remember is that Sri Aurobindo always placed India's freedom in the larger context of the destiny of the human race. This fact is most remarkable because revolutionaries talk only about their own country. However, Sri Aurobindo always had a deeper vision of what India should do for humanity. In fact, he said that India has to be free in order that it can play its role in the emancipation of the human race. Sri Aurobindo was not chauvinist; he did not look upon Indian freedom as an end in itself. The remarkable coincidence is that India achieved independence on Sri Aurobindo's seventy-first birthday, that is August 15, 1947.
The first phase of Sri Aurobindo's message is one of spiritual nationalism; the message that the nation is a spiritual power, the goddess, the message that nationalism is a spiritual imperative. It is not any longer a question of choice or another career, or another thing to do; it is something that has an inner imperative, because it is only possible to fulfil one's dharma if one does it. It is a message of clear-cut political thinking and organisation of how to defeat the most mighty empire the world had ever known through a combination of activities, both violent underground and non-violent overground; a vision of a regenerated India, a vision that is the link between the first phase of Sri Aurobindo's life and the second phase and image of India that would play a major role in the emancipation.
The Alipore Bomb Conspiracy Case is an interesting event in Sri Aurobindo's life. Oddly enough, the judge who tried him, Justice Beech Croft had been with him in Cambridge. It was a tribute to the British system of justice that although it was quite clear that Sri Aurobindo was involved, and there was no doubt about it, they could not find adequate proof, so they released him. However, Deshbandhu Chittaranjan Das was sitting in his room when he read in the papers that Sri Aurobindo was arrested. He moved the court and took up defence of Sri Aurobindo. Sri Aurobindo was totally detached, because when he went to jail (what he called his 'âshram-vâs'), he had a great vision of Sri Krishna. The quote from C R Das: 'my appeal to you is this, that long after the controversy will be hushed in silence, long after his turmoil and agitation will be ceased, long after he is dead and gone, he will be looked upon as the poet of patriotism, as the prophet of nationalism, and the lover of humanity. Long after he is dead and gone, his words will have echoed and re-echoed not only in India, but across distant seas and lands. Therefore, I say that the man in his position is not only standing before the bar of this court, but before the bar of the high court of history.'
It is easier to write about the first part of Sri Aurobindo's life because it was on the surface, largely on the surface. The second half of his life is much more difficult. He suddenly left Bengal in 1910. He went first to Chandranagore and then to Pondicherry in 1910 and for 40 years he did not move out of Pondicherry. He lived the rest of his life there and in the course of these 40 years he produced some of the most remarkable works of this century. His Collected Works have been published in 30 volumes. His great books, The Life Divine, Essays on the Gita, The Human Cycle, Synthesis of Yoga and his great poem Savitri, stand as monumental literary and spiritual achievements. It is a formidable corpus of work which covers every aspect of life, because Sri Aurobindo always used to say, all life is yoga; there is no aspect of life which is not included in yoga because his yoga was an integral yoga covering all elements of the human personality.
It is not easy to approach his work during this period. He was a poet. Apart from Savitri, which is a very long poem, he wrote short poems as well as a beautiful one called WHO. The great concepts of the Vedanta, all pervasiveness of the divine, the light of all lights tameva bhântamanubhâti sarvam, tasya bhâsa sarvamidam vibhâti all of these are projected by Sri Aurobindo in his own unique manner.
Ever since he returned to India, he had a series of spiritual experiences one in Baroda soon after he returned; and another one in Kashmir in the Shankaracharya temple while he was walking. He had a vision of "the vacant infinite" as he calls it. He started practising yoga in Baroda with a Maharashtrian yogi, Vishu Bhaskar Lele; he had this great transformative vision of Sri Krishna in the Alipore jail, when he looked upon everything, he saw the jailer, wardens, fellow prisoners, the judge, the jury all of them appeared to be animators of Sri Krishna.
When he came to Pondicherry, he started developing his own comprehensive theory: his earlier work can be called "spiritual nationalism", while his later work could be called "spiritual evolution". He was par excellence "an evolutionary philosopher". That is the key to an understanding of Sri Aurobindo's work, and that is what sets him apart from the other great rishis and teachers that India has produced.
Aurobindo's theory of cosmo genesis, his theory of the creation of the cosmos is that pure consciousness plunges into the other pole which is the inert matter, seemingly inert matter. It is the plunge of consciousness into matter that really starts the process of creation. It could be called a spiritual big bang because the big bang is not simply something coming out of nothing. Obviously if all of this is involved in consciousness, then consciousness must have existed; it plunges into the other extreme, and then the long flow of evolutionary development begins.
Sri Aurobindo talks of the three billion years of pre-biological evolution, primitive life-forms and a billion years of biological evolution through various forms and then up through the ascending chain, when the mind begins to appear after a long, long gap. The human race begins to develop on this planet, consciousness begins to grow gradually and slowly consciousness begins to dawn. Stanley Rubric's great film 2001 Space Oddysey, based upon a short story by Arthur C Clarke graphically shows the apes and the sudden leap into human consciousness. So from mineral, vegetable, animal to human forms, these are all developing on this planet. Sri Aurobindo lays great stress on the planet because he feels that this planet is a special crucible for the evolution of consciousness.
With the advent of man or human beings, there is for the first time a being that is self-conscious. In other words, conscious of being conscious. With the development of the human mind, for the first time there is a creature that is self-conscious, and therefore, for the first time there is a new evolutionary possibility. The advent of human consciousness marks an important step in the adventure of consciousness on planet earth.
According to Sri Aurobindo, man is not the end product of evolution. Man is simply an intermediate creature, between the animal and the divine. In the same way as evolution has come up for mineral, vegetable, animal to human consciousness, according to Sri Aurobindo, the evolutionary thrust will necessarily proceed to the next step which would be the movement from the mental to the supramental, and from man to superman. This is the critical point to understand in Sri Aurobindo's philosophy; there are implications to it.
The first implication is that whereas previously evolution was blind in as much as plants did not have any particular role to play in evolution, or fish did not have any real role to play, it was a sort of a natural instinctive evolution. But with the advent of man, for the first time, there is a creature on planet earth that can cooperate consciously with the force of evolution. This is the great difference. Evolution need no longer be blind and instinctive. Human beings are endowed with consciousness that enables them to cooperate with the evolutionary thrust. And thereby perhaps, speed up and telescope what, otherwise would have taken another billion years into a much shorter time span. The concept that has evolved is that man is an intermediate creature between the animal and the divine, and is endowed with consciousness that enables him to cooperate with the forces of evolution.
In his political thought, Sri Aurobindo had put forward a brilliant theory of nation and nationalism and a methodology for achieving it. In the case of his spiritual theory he did the same thing. Basically, Sri Aurobindo was not a theorist, but a yogi; he was the pioneer of the supramental. In the first part of his life he was a prophet of Indian nationalism, and in the second half of his life, he was a pioneer of the supramental. Through his own sâdhana, and yogic practices and with the help of the Mother, who was a very powerful spiritual figure in her own right and his spiritual collaborator, Sri Aurobindo gradually developed and perfected what he called the "integral yoga". According to him, it is the integral yoga which can enable us to move from the present fractured, fragmented and disoriented state of our consciousness to a much clearer and sharper focus of our psyche and ultimately a breakthrough into the higher consciousness.
It is important to remember that Sri Aurobindo was not a theoretical philosopher. He was a yogi, a practitioner of integral yoga who looked upon himself as the path finder, as somebody who has gone where nobody else had ever been. In trying to clear the way, he had to undergo sâdhana and tremendous spiritual and psychological and physical strain. For 40 years he lived in one house, and in one room for 25 years without ever leaving the room. The astounding thing was that a man like Sri Aurobindo, with a brilliant mind, a great activist, effectively shut himself off from the rest of the world and with his sâdhana developed the whole concept of the integral yoga.
In all his books, he describes in great detail the difficulties he encountered on his path, and what is to be done. Yoga cannot be described in words; it has to be experienced, but basically it involves the quest for what he calls the psychic being.
The psychic being, in some way, would be what in traditional Hindu thought would be the atman, the divinity within us. Sri Aurobindo has analysed the physical dimension, the psychological dimension of what he calls a vital, emotional dimension, the psychological dimension and then the other deeper dimensions of the human body. His integral yoga brings together the four traditional yogas of Hindu philosophy and religious striving: the Jnana yoga (the way of wisdom), the Bhakti yoga (the way of devotion), Karma yoga (the way of words), and Raj yoga (the way of spiritual practices), and inner development. Sri Aurobindo brings these together in an extraordinary way and is able, therefore, to put before us the integral yoga with all its difficulties. He has never underestimated the difficulties involved. He talks about the negative, hostile and dark forces that are constantly trying to obstruct the descent of the light. And yet he has ultimately overcome it.
Three movements in his yoga can be identified. The first would be an entire surrender of all the elements of life to a total and integral surrender to the divine, not only a psychological surrender, but a physical, emotional and a psychic surrender. Second, an ascent of consciousness to the supramental realm. The absorption of the light and the power of the supramental. Third, the return to earth with the light of the supramental. This is really where Sri Aurobindo's teachings are different from most other traditional teachings. The concept of rising into higher levels of consciousness and going out in ecstasy is well established in Vedanta; it is not new. In fact, that is the goal of Vedanta, of spiritual striving, to join the atman and the brahman just as the dew drop slips into the shining sea to become one with the ocean of light. But it is important to remember and this is a key concept in Sri Aurobindo that his goal was not individual salvation. His goal was not even a collective salvation; it was nothing short of a divination of matter, a transmutation of terrestrial consciousness. It is an astounding goal, amazing in its audacity. He revolted against the British, the Congress, and the texture of matter itself. He was not satisfied with this matter and felt it had got to change, and the only way to change the texture of the matter, molecular or otherwise, is to bring down the light and the power of supramental to bear upon terrestrial consciousness. That was the key. And bringing down that light a riddle like Prometheus in the Greek myth brings down the first from heaven. Similarly, Sri Aurobindo sought to bring down the supramental fire and make it operative on earth. That was in fact his main task; nothing less than the creation of a new heaven and a new earth.
That is why we have to understand the dimensions of what Sri Aurobindo was trying to do in collaboration with the Mother. The only parallel in our tradition is the story of Vishwamitra. Vishwamitra, dissatisfied with the present creation began his own srishti, a new creation, but of course, Menaka intervened and his new creation never took place. Bharat was born after whom our nation is called Bhârat, but the idea of Vishwamitra existed. Vishwamitra's ideas were to create a new srishti, a new creation. Sri Aurobindo's concept was not so much of a new creation, as a transmutation of this creation into a new dimension. This is the strength and a tremendous power and sweep of Sri Aurobindo's writings.
Sri Aurobindo's Essays on the Gita is masterly; one does not have to accept his theory of supramental transformation to take advantage of his tremendously powerful writings on the Gita, the Upanishads, our social, political problems, education and health. His genius illuminated the intellectual landscape. But if you are to follow or understand what his peculiar contribution to philosophy has been, then one has to realise it has been this theory of evolutionary spiritualism, supramentalisation and consciousness on planet earth; it is only this ultimate according to Sri Aurobindo. When this new dimension comes about, there will be final reconciliation between matter and spirit, inner and the outer light, thinking and feeling, being and doing, and between the kinetic and the quiet elements of the human psyche. None of the problems of the world can be solved unless there is a leap in the new consciousness. There have been great rishis, seers and avataras who have done great things, but they left the world pretty much as it was when they came in. He said he was not satisfied with that. He wanted to create a new world, change the texture of this world, and change matter itself. Matter itself will be divinised according to Sri Aurobindo, once the supramental light begins its full efflorescence on planet earth.
In this process, Madame Alfasa, Mira Alfasa, the Mother, was a remarkable woman, who was already involved in a great deal of spiritual activity. She came to Pondicherry and became Sri Aurobindo's spiritual collaborator. When Sri Aurobindo passed away on December 5, 1950, the Mother continued his work for another quarter of a century. She, in fact, recorded that February 29, 1956, which is a leap day, was the golden day, a day on which supramental finally descended on the planet. Aurobindo Ashram, the new experiment of Auroville, an international, inter-cultural, multi-religious, multi-racial township in Tamil Nadu set up by the Mother is based on the teachings of Sri Aurobindo.
Sri Aurobindo was a remarkable person who began his life as a student in England, came back as a teacher to Baroda, moved as a revolutionary to Calcutta, then went on to become the greatest philosopher of this century in Pondicherry. His shikshabhoomi was England, his karmabhoomi was Baroda, krântibhoomi Calcutta and his yogabhoomi Pondicherry.
In his message on August 15, 1947, he says: 'August 15, 1947 is the birthday of free India. It marks for her the end of an old era, the beginning of a new age, but we can also make it by our own life and acts as a free nation, an important date in a new age opening to the whole world for the political, social, cultural and spiritual future of humanity. August 15 is my own birthday and it is naturally gratifying to me that it should have assumed this vast difference. I take this coincidence not as a fortuitous accident, but as the sanction and seal of the divine force that guides my steps on the work with which I began life, the beginning of its full fruition. Indeed on this day, he says, I can watch almost all the world movements which I hope to see fulfilled in my lifetime; though then they looked like impracticable dreams arriving at fruition or on their way to achievement. In all these movements, free India may well play a large part and take a leading position.'
He then goes on to talk about his five dreams. The first dream was a revolutionary movement for a free and united India, and he laments the fact that although India is free, it is not united. He says the partition must go, and ultimately there must be unity. Whether that happens through SAARC which is my interpretation, or some kind of a regional organisation or whatever. The second was a resurgence and liberation of the peoples of Asia and he says that also was nearing completion since the colonial age has come to an end. The third was a world union for all mankind and that is what, in fact, we are all striving for now with a global society. The fourth was a spiritual gift of India to the world and he speaks about this, the spiritual gift, and finally, the evolutionary step to a higher and a larger consciousness.
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