Model of Nine Levels of Growth


Model of Nine Levels of Growth

Level 1

When the spirit embodied itself, it assumed a body which later developed a vital and then a mind. It may be logical that the spirit should first assume a mind and acquire the body finally. It is not so in practice.

From the other end, it is logical that Mother Earth while creating would create the body first. Without going further deep into the spiritual truths of it, let us spread out our enquiry with a view to serving the theory of social development. Social development as a possible idea arose when mind knew that it could make the body work better under its hegemony. Therefore, instead of starting the study at level 9, I start at One.

Man’s physical, vital, mental planes are further subdivided into mental, vital, physical in each plane, thus creating nine levels of functioning.

Number One is pure mind, the pure thinker, the seat of the philosopher. Though it evolved out of the 8 previous levels, in its own perfection it stands aloof, not related to any other centre effectively. Number 2 and Number 3 are in touch with number 5 and 7 and in that measure will be influenced by them. One too is similarly in touch with 4 & 7 and is influenced as such. But One has an aloofness at the end of the cycle of evolution even as 9 has an aloofness at the beginning. Nine lives all by itself outside the reach of the rest of the centres that are yet to be developed. We cannot say the same thing about One since it issued out of the progress the other 8 levels made. Still its character of evolving out of the previous bases enables it to stand really aloof uninfluenced by any other previous levels.

Concepts are formed in One which is the seat of the philosopher. Thought at 3 is facts or is factual, i.e. related to a fact, not self-existent. At 2 they are coloured by the emotion and acquire the garb of a sentiment. Thought shedding its factual nature and weaning itself from the sentiment becomes pure thought. Pure thought seeks to be logical and rational. Thought acquires rationality when it is organised according to logic. Thus, thought acquires a structure of organised base. Its capacity to be organised leads to its growth. Systems of thought develop. Man endowed with that capacity is a thinker. Evolving from 9 he becomes a thinker traveling through the stages of work, vitality, and scholarship. Work generates energy and energy, ideas based on facts and events. One endowed with those details is the scholar. The scholar matures into thinker or philosopher. An original thinker is one whose raw materials are not work or energy or event acts. Using thoughts as his own raw material, he builds systems of thought to become an original thinker. If his thinking creates something new to the world of ideas, he becomes a creative thinker. The mind that is capable of generating ideas not based on experience in the world but based on other original ideas is a creative mind.

One, apart from being a thinker, serves as a seat of ego where ego can strike its roots deep. Ego is called the coordinating intelligence. HE also calls it reason. Sri Aurobindo equates ego and reason. Reason organises ideas around a centre. That centre is usurped by ego. One is a centre of thought, not force. But through thought, ego tries to reach the depths of one’s being to draw upon its power. Ego reaching that depth through the physical will be tenacious by virtue of its physicality, but will not have the power of penetration given by the organised idea. Nor does the vital yield powers of that dimension.

Sri Aurobindo says ideas arise from the body. It is known that there are ideas of the mind, ideas of the heart and ideas of the body. When the movements of the body are energised, they seek direction for their action. That direction is the knowledge of the body. Having originated there, it reaches the mind after certain refinements. The origin of ideas is body, rather, the movements of the body.

Social development is conceived of by One and is executed by the remaining parts. The process of the social development and the process of the individual’s development from 9 to 1 and further from 1 to 9 are the same. Hence One is capable of conceiving social development as an idea.

Being mind, One does not have energy or power but has only light. The only power of mind is the power of organising the ideas into a decision for action or a determination to execute. One has no power over the rest (2 to 9) except in the measure they are willing to obey.

Intrinsically One has the power to dominate all the rest as it is drawn from them, but that power accrues only when the clarity, organisation and strength of One reaches the very depth of 9. The Mind can dominate Matter if the Mind comes into its own. Presently it is Matter that dominates Mind as the Light in the Mind is not fully emerged.

Level 2

The vital in the mind is called Two, represented by feeling and sentiment in consciousness above and substance below. Sensations begin in the body, move to vital and emotion, and in the end reach mind. They are known as physical sensation, vital sensation, emotional sensation and mental sensation. Burning, itching, thirst, hunger are physical; anger, attraction, urge, impulse are vital; affection, kindness, sympathy are emotional; curiosity, memory, imagination are of the mind. The emotional sensation is fortified or organised as a thought enters it when it becomes a feeling. Sentiment is a stronger version of it when the feeling of consciousness is accepted by the mental substance. Sensitivities arise from the sentiments.

Mind is a plane of understanding, observation, comprehension, decision, imagination, conception, sympathy. Thought, emotion and action interact in each of the 3 planes of mind, vital and physical. In each plane, the action is different. In law and order problems, the action of the authorities varies from bursting tear gas shells, to firing. They move over the scale of cane charge, lathi charge, opening fire, calling in reserve police and finally the army. Each level of deterrence is meted out by a different level of officer. The same action, gaining in intensity, demands a higher officer to execute. Thought acts differently in the physical from the mind. So also emotions act in the mind very differently from the plane of body. But it retains the character of emotion in all the planes.

Viewed in this context, Sentiment and Feeling give us more views to consider. Movement of energy is both ways, from 1 to 2 and from 3 to 2. The decision of 3 is decisive as long as sympathy does not enter into its fabric. The strength of decision is watered down by the touch of emotion. Here the strength arises from its being crude. The clarity of concept loses its precision when it admits into its fold feeling or sentiment. Moving downwards from 1, sentiment is a weakening agent, weakening of a thought. Moving upwards, sentiment weakens the crudity of a decision. Sentiment is sandwiched between the refined thought and crude decision.

Action emotionalised refines the sensational thought into pure idea, re-organising it around the mental sense instead of sensational thought. Conceptual clarity is diluted by feeling to be ready to act in the medium of life. Here it loses its refined organisation for pure thinking in favour of crude organisation necessary for action.

Action issuing out of the decision of 3 will not have the benefit of ethics of feeling and will be limited to the emotions of the vital energy which belongs to society. Social emotions to be upgraded into ethical ideals need the office of feeling and sentiment.

The process of refined ideas becoming feeling is accomplished by the emotional energy in the mental plane. Its further development to decision in the descent is achieved by the energy of feeling turning into energy of action. We witness in all the planes horizontally the movements of energy of comprehension towards energy of action via energy of emotion. Vertically too, from the body to mind and vice versa, this movement retains the same character.

Personality of man is stationed or centred only at one point. To understand a man, one has to understand all his actions from this point of reference. As the 9 or 108 levels concentrate for purposes of existence of an individual and collect at one point of his most integrated centre to make it his personality, we need to discard the general discussion in favour of a given situation. This helps us evaluate his action and enables us to advise him on self-improvement.

General consideration of an individual or an individual evaluation of a general situation opens the possibilities of discussion on all sides which is the strategy by which confusion is organised.

Passion, ambition, devotion, dedication, sensibility, sensitivity, ideal, etc. emerge into clearer foci by this classification.

Two is the seat of poet as 1 is the seat of philosopher. 3 is the arsenal of the organiser. Language serves each of them differently. It supplies matter of fact phrases to the organiser, metaphor to the poet and well-defined, precise words devoid of sentiments to the scholar. Emphasizing their own version of language, the philosopher can degenerate into the doctrinaire professor, the poet into an idealist and the organiser can raise his actions to the level that demands worship or obedience.

As the descent is more powerful than the plodding ascent, we should carefully sift them out before any serious consideration.

Level 3

The mind that is seated in the brain and known to be the physical mind is 3 in our scale. This is the centre of intellectuality, decision and determination. What is decision in consciousness becomes determination in the substance. The physical substance sensitised is nerves. Its capacity to think evolves to the level of brain in the head. The physical moves and is not capable of anything other than the movement except the physical sensation. The physical movements organised by 7 become skill of a primary level. The moving physicality releases energy and generates the plane of vitality. The vital sensation going to the mind turns into thought to come back to the body to direct and dominate it. Four is the mind of the vital which gives 3 the sensational facts. Three receives the facts but not the sensation. Sensational facts when separated from the senses become pure facts. Facts are coordinated by 3 to generate thoughts. Such thoughts are organised into a system to become a decision for action. What acts in 3 is not senses but the mental sense which is the essence of senses.

This can be more fully appreciated when we consider what happens in the formation of concepts and ideas. Here it is not the mental sense that acts but the faculty of discrimination. Sense is removed from the fact so that it becomes a pure fact. Pure facts are uninfluenced even by the mental sense and lend themselves to form an idea or concept.

My friend helps me to learn the work is a sensational fact which is a rider to the work of learning. The non-sensational fact is, I am learning the work. Learning the work is a fact for the mental senses. Shorn of the mental sense, it becomes PURE when we see an unskilled part becomes skilled by the higher organised energy relating to the unorganised faculty. This is a concept, an idea.

Basically, physical moves; it creates movement and thereby generates energy. The physical movements are organised by 7 as primary skill of organised physical movements. The vital organises energy to act forcefully in a given direction. Mind organises sensational facts into decision and pure facts into ideas.

Number 3 is the organiser and every little thing achieved by civilisation so far is achieved only by 3.

Three is in direct relation with 6 & 9 that are physical too. Juxtaposed between 4 and 2, naturally it is in touch with them.

The physical mind, 3, is in direct relation to 7, the mind of the physical. Three is practical and receives only empirical facts. For this reason it can never fail. For the very same reason it cannot be creative because creativity requires imagination and must function in non-physical contexts.

No. 4 is the mind of the vital which thinks guided by the intensity of the energy and its effectivity. Psychologically it is selfish. Non-psychologically it is the thought of the energy, rather high energy. Therefore it is non-moral, cunning, shrewd, often unfailing. Morals issue out of ethics and belong to the plane of mind, not the mind of the vital. 3 receives the feed of 4 but sheds its sensation before it processes it. Shedding the sensation, 3 is enabled to decide on an issue while sensations will weaken the decision. At a further stage, the decision that is weakened by the sensation of 4, will be strengthened by the higher sensation of 2.

As 9 is the physical existence or awareness, 3 is mental existence or mental awareness. But 3 as it is not yet touched by 2 remains unemotional. Great administrators belong to 3. HE says Ford has pragmatic intelligence whose home is 3. Those in whom 3 is well developed will be successful executives.

No. 3’s objectivity is less when sentiment of No. 2 colours it, but if the sentiment is one that is intense with the decision of 3, the decision is fortified.

Thought is the product of sensation in the physical part of the mind. The function of brain produces thought, one faculty of mind, contrary to the belief that mind is the result of the functioning of brain.

3 is the seat of action because it moves 7 which is the primary actor.

Level 4

The vital plane matures when it evolves the mental element in it. It is what HE calls vital mind and we have assigned 4 to it in our scale. Any plane begins with the physical, develops the vital and ends by developing mind. That is true of the mental plane too.

The development of any plane is in two dimensions. One is from physical to mental. The other is substance to consciousness. In the vital plane at 6 a beginning is made. So 6 is physical vital substance. The mere body evolving life energy evolves it as substance of life. From there horizontally 6 develops towards 4, vertically the substance develops into consciousness. Here it is the vital consciousness. The hard, inert substance releasing vital energy becomes slowly conscious of its own vitality. That is the vital consciousness. From 9 to 1 at each level substance in its upward movement towards 1 evolves consciousness, while in the downward movement consciousness develops into matter or substance. This happens at all levels. As water expands 1700 times in becoming vapour, the upward movement is expansive in volume, while the downward movement shrinks and becomes hard. The vital power issues from this expanding volume.

If we do not consider the organisation of mind, the most efficient part of man is 4. The organisation raises the level of efficiency. As the man who has moved to 3 is not yet fully effective, No. 4 often excels him even as the graduate’s earning is less than the uneducated shopkeeper. The superiority of 3 is not in question at all but till 3 comes into its own, 4 can always steal a march over him. Also, 3 being mental and rational, it is not so subtle as 4 which is entirely vital and subtle. Therefore 4 has always a penetrative insight into the weaknesses of 3 till it is fully organised. Hence the apparent superiority of 4.

3 is hampered by several aspects till it is perfectly organised when it is invulnerable. First of all, 3 is physical while 4 is mental. Therefore subtlety is greater at 4. Having come into the mental plane, 3 becomes ethical or moral while 4 is totally free of that inhibition. 4 seeks after victory at all costs while 3 is more concerned with its organisation and rightness. Victory, as anything else, pursued for its own sake, irrespective of other considerations, will certainly be more powerful and effective than result pursued under certain conditions such as ethics and systems.

Democracy made non-military civil leaders the head of a nation putting the general under them. Till then the military leader was the ruler. They were of 4. The enormous courage of 5 makes them leaders who go to victory. When that courage turns into thought, it is extremely resourceful. Sri Aurobindo says Shivaji is a vibhuti but he had no compunction to kill his opponent in a fraternal embrace, a heinous crime for a moral man. Shivaji had no moral compunctions as he was seated in No. 4.

The philosopher of 1 and the organiser of 3 are objects of ridicule for men of 4. For him, philosophy is insubstantial and the organiser is too slow and too dull-witted.

As No. 7 and No. 1 are minds too, No. 4 is in direct relationship with them. No. 7 is subconscious and No. 1 is fully conscious. The thoroughness of 7 cannot be there in 4 even as the clarity of 1 is missing. Without being thorough or clear, 4 is dynamic, fast, reaches its goal unfailingly, unfettered by ideals, ethics, sentiments.

Foresters, rustic community leaders, smugglers, mafia chieftains are of 4. They are shrewd, penetrating, disciplined and therefore unfailing. There is only one punishment among them for lack of loyalty, viz. death. Obedience and adherence are total for this reason.

In the individual who lacks courage, 4 gives superstition. His superstition arises not from outside but from his own fears and intense imagination. The intensity that creates insight in the strong creates intense fears in the weak.

4 is the seat of social security acting as social conscience. It is 4 that sets the fashions, lays down social norms, norms of public conduct, approved manners. In the ascent it processes the emotions of 5 into emotional thought. In the descent it receives the decision and determination of 3 and infuses emotional commitment to them.

In times of social degeneration, the strength of 4 determines the length of social, psychological survival. In times of social upward movement, society moves up only to the extent 4 approves. Shrewdness, insight, penetration, alertness, resourcefulness are its endowments.

Strong 4 in the head of the family will make the family a victim of tyranny, but the family will become a success though enveloped in fear and suffused by tension.

4 is the monitor of motives in consciousness and substance.

Level 5

The vital of the vital plane is pure vital even as 1 is pure mind and 9 is pure physical. In our scale it is assigned to 5. This is the seat of the warrior, the artist and all those whose emotion rises to the peak before being touched even by the mental of the vital plane 4.

The movement from below is accompanied by the phenomenon of enormous expansion of energy at the first level of physical to the vital. As energy is subtle emerging from the dense material plane, its volume expands vastly issuing power of the greatest magnitude. 5 is the peak along that path as it combines the conversion of the physical plane into the vital plane as well as No.6 into No. 5, again a conversion of the physical in the vital plane into pure vital. Next it goes to 4 when the energy becomes sensational knowledge. This conversion entails a loss of power of the vital but generates the efficacy of thought. Thought in 4 is not of the mental plane where its characteristic is ethic, logic and rationality. But it has the knowing character of thought. Knowledge unencumbered by ethical restraint, necessity of logical conversion or rational structure both of which involve considerable energy, is mercilessly powerful. Possessors of this faculty are ruthless tyrants unfailingly successful in their operations as long as their acts are in the realms outside ethics.

2, 5, and 8 are the vital parts of the various planes. Similar parts of different planes are in touch with each other. The higher inspires the lower, the lower supports the functioning of the higher. Faculties and capacities collect in each part, but will not yield results till they are saturated. When a similar part of a lower plane begins to function, the unsaturated capacities of the higher part come to its rescue. What happens in 3 cannot but influence 7 and 4 as they are similar. It is true every part influences every other part, but the mutual influence of similar parts is greater. These influences are naturally positive and negative, positive from above and negative from below. 3 is physical but mind, while 4 and 7 are mental parts. 1 directly influences 4 and 7 but 3 will influence 4 and 7 if the particular work connects them both. Such relations are a topic by themselves wide enough. 3 is mainly the organiser that organises thoughts into decision. An activity of either 4 or 7 containing an element of organisation of decision will put it in touch with 3. Suppose 8 has received a shock of fear from a fall, the great surge of courage taking place in 5 will be hampered by the resurrecting memory of 8 as it is in direct touch with it. Apart from that, as in other parts, 5 is in direct relation by sequence with 4 and 6.

In our scheme of consciousness and substance for each part we have assigned sensation and sensitivity to 5. The role of the vital is to influence the physical by bringing the mental power to bear on it. The vital organises the energies into sensations which, when reaching the mind, create thought. The body always is a docile servant to mind more than to the vital.

The five senses respond to events with their sensational energies and get coordinated as SENSATION. Mind has its own sense, better called as mental sense, which is other than the vital sensation. Mind’s sense emerges when the mind separates the reports to itself from its sensational part. Power really belongs to the physical, energy to the vital, clarity to the mind. But energy too enjoys power of energy even as ideas have the mental power. Still, when the sensation seeps down to the vital substance it turns into sensitivity which has far more power than sensation. Its power comes from the fact that it goes to the substance of the vital. Really the substance in any plane is the physical of that plane. So, truly power at last comes from the physical.

Five is the pure hero, the great artist, the lover who kills himself, the patriot who sacrifices everything for his country. As 5 is untouched by mind, it has the capacity to be oblivious of the environment, consequences, commitments and will go to the target straight like an arrow.

Man was in tune with nature when 5 was the height of his evolution. At that time his faculties were pugnacity, gregariousness, survival, self-preservation, abandon of self-forgetful joy, etc.

Music is the form of sound, painting is the form of colour and lines, courage is the form of force. Hence their natural seat is 5.

Negatively 5 is the seat of fear, obsession, phobia, force of superstition.

Sensation of 5 energises the natural physiological functions with energy such as running in fear.

Great warriors like Shivaji, Alexander are of 5. Napoleon does not belong to 5 as he is pre-eminently the law giver, the organiser, but 5 was his most effective faculty while on the battlefield with bullets whizzing past him.

Level 6

Six is the physical part of the vital plane and is seated in the central nervous system, even as 3 is seated in the brain. The physical parts of the planes have a physical organ as the seat, 3 in brain, 6 in the nerves, 9 in the body. At 6, the human personality emerge into the vital plane which means the physical movements generate vital energies. Therefore the greatest energies are witnessed at this stage. In civilisation, this is marked by the urban commercial life from rural agricultural life. Individually the blue collar worker taking to education is at 6. Any single activity can find itself at 6, for that matter at any level, irrespective of the fact that the individual is far advanced at 1 or 2 or primitive at 9 or 8. He will find himself meeting the characteristics of 6 with respect to any one activity if it is there.

An advanced thinker not used to crafts can find himself at 6 if he ever takes to it. A dud for some reason may be evolved and find himself at 6 in shooting. As faculties and parts of man have an independent existence in exceptional cases, this state of affairs is always possible. While 6 is the point where the being enters the vital plane, 5 is the point where a further expansion of 6 into 5 -- physical into vital in the vital plane -- is added. This is the reason for finding people of greatest vital power at 5. It is true growth in one part or growth of a faculty is generally accompanied by growth of other parts or faculties. But that growth is only in potential, not in actualities.

It is natural that 6 is in touch with 3 and 9 as they are physical parts and with 5 and 7 which are adjacent parts. The developments of 3 indirectly influence the growth of 6, while the strength or weakness of 9 lend their support to 6 and its existence. The topic of the adjacent parts and similar parts and their influence on each part is a wide one into which I do not go here.

March of civilisation finds its journey in man from 9 to 1 and from 1 to 9. Ideas, opinions, sensitivities, preferences etc. often get lodged in any part. Such opinions, etc. of the 6 cannot be removed by mental effort as there is nothing of mind in 6. Fundamentalists belong to 6. If they are to be educated, it must be vital education, not mental education. The vital is educated by sensations such as fear, attraction, not argument or explanation or reasoning. The physical cannot be educated even by sensation. It can be educated by doing a thing by itself, i.e. by direct experience only, not by other means, since it has no mind to listen to explanations nor sense centres to respond to sensations. The scientists of the world and even other social scientists have espoused the ideal of empiricism in spite of having a faculty to think and comprehend. To make a dent in their beliefs, one has to achieve in fact contrary to their beliefs. Even then, they may accept that particular achievement but in all their other fields, they will be physical with pride. The history of democracy is a standing proof of this phenomenon. After the monarch is disposed, the leader of the democracy is treated as the monarch and that attitude seeps down to the very bottom. That is the tenacity of the physical phenomenon.

During periods of calamities, man moves down to a low point. No longer the mind holds its own nor the vital. He moves down to 6 and acts only from there or from 7.

Emotion and devotion belong to consciousness and substance of 6. Devotion properly belongs to 5 but its strength and intensity reach their height only at 6.

Emotion at 4 can be coloured by some knowledge, but at 6 the scope for any tinge of knowledge is nil. Kannapan could dig out his eyes because he was a 6. Jean Valjean’s emotional sense of duty to his sister rises from his being at 6. The life of a galley slave, the criminal mind, his fine emotions to Cossette all arise similarly. 6 can slave. It has no moral, ethical sense and finds it natural to be a criminal or to be a saint. To a 6, there is no difference between sainthood or a criminal life. It is simply a way of life.

6 is the point at which vital and physical sensations meet and emerge into each other in the ascent and descent. 6 is open to raw physical influence as 9 is, because it is of that type. All the power of 3 in organisation does not touch 6 because it has no idea of what it is.

Level 7

In our classification of Man into physical, vital and mental, though we have nine levels, in reality the levels are innumerable and never-ending. In each small act of ours like swallowing a mouthful of food or taking the most important decision of life, there exist strands of mental, physical, and vital intertwined. Only a general idea is attempted here, not a very minute analysis.

From such a view, 7 is the mental part of the physical which puts the physical and vital movements into an organisation that can be identified as skill. To our perception, these skills are subconscious as we are not aware of them. A subconscious skill is one that one cannot be aware of however much he tries, such as the functioning of blood circulation; but the skills acquired by 7 can be seen when we turn our attention towards them. Only they are not in our conscious perception, not so much because it cannot be known as that we do not care to take note of them. Such a subconscious skill resides in 9. When 9 is split into three parts, its mental part is subconscious which controls our involuntary organs.

Bone, flesh, nerves, tissues, ligaments, cartilage are all of different composition. Their composition varies according to their strength. Brain falls under a special category. Brain is the flesh that thinks. By thinking the flesh becomes soft, perhaps softest in the body. It is mellowed by thought. The thinking faculty of Man is carried on not only in the brain but is extended to the seat of reflexes in the spine and ends up in the cells which have a mind of their own, called by Mother "cellular mind."

For our purposes, 7 is the seat of the primary mental activity which mentalises the movements of 9 and the energies of 8. It is in touch with 4 and 1 as they too are of mind, but refuses to respond to the emotion of 4 or the ideas of 1 since it has no faculty of that description. It is just below 3, offering a constant support as foundation. Here too, the organisation, decision and determination of 3 when descending on it leaves it untouched and unmoved. As its own organisation is rudimentary, the highly complex organisation of 3 leaves it baffled. As elsewhere, 7 serves as the foundation to 3, rather offers foundational support.

The mental part turns the energies of sensation into ideas and organises them so that the idea will go back to the body to dominate it. In 7 the energies it receives are energies of physical sensation. So, the maximum possibility here is its conversion into physical ideas. Physically an idea about movement is the process of skill formation. Individual skills inside each elementary act are many. Walking, talking, drinking, driving a nail are such activities. Into any of these rudimentary acts go dozens of physical movements. For instance, in walking hundreds of muscles should learn to coordinate themselves so that the feet are firm on the ground. Walking is a willed movement. A will, a volition should arise. It is a mental movement. The body should enter locomotion if the feet are to move in steps. Blood circulation, breathing, etc. should conform to the requirements of greater energy demanded by walking. Eyes should commission themselves into seeing at a distance for clearance. A simple act of walking, before it evolved into its final shape, fashioned hundreds of individual skills as described above and then submitted them to coordination. All these are organised by 7. The organisation is there, skill formation is also there, but it is the physical skill and organisation of physical skills fashioned out of physical movements. There is no trace of thought or mind here except it is the mind of the body.

Sri Aurobindo speaks of a physical organisation that governs the world. Its organisation, the organisation of 7 and of 3 as well as the organisation of ideas into concepts at 1 have in common AN ORGANISATION. That is a physical organisation at 7 and mental organisation at 1. Sri Aurobindo speaks of discovering a higher organisation than this physical organisation to cure the disorders of Life and Mind.

Skill and capacity are its attributes in consciousness and substance. Skill converts energy by organisation into a usable tool. The essence of the effort is the process of skill formation. A great many skills forming at one level or at one point let their essences collect at that point as capacity. Skill is the process of the individual act yielding results. Capacity is the strength of their essence collected in the substance as foundation. Such a capacity can be drawn into one single skill to fortify it. That makes any skill a talent. The faculty that turns capacity to a skill for it to become a talent is ability.

The principles of formation of skills, capacity, talent, ability, etc. are the same at all levels of personality, be it physical or spiritual. The values at each point that serve as a medium are different in different planes. Coordination as in a gear plate is a physical value while fidelity to facts is a mental value at 3 where it is arriving at a decision.

Level 8

8 is the vital of the physical plane. This is the earliest of points where vitality enters human personality. Also this is the first point that is untouched by mentality. Though it is vitality, its vitality will not bear any sign of energy man knows of vitality but will be of the character of the physical, even as the mental effort of the neo-literate is education for him.

Energy and Force find their seats here in consciousness and substance. The only liveliness, freshness that can be witnessed here is the ‘enormous’ amount of physical energy into which the merest existence of 9 converts itself here. Movements generating energy are seen here for the first time as a phenomenon.

7 is a poor mentality and is feebly influenced by the great cunning of 4 and the brilliant ideas of 1. On a parallel, 8 is thus related to 5 and 2. Men at 8 can rise to poetry moved by the physical intensity of the occasion. At the thanksgiving function at Mother Estates, an old man moved by the emotions of the function, burst into a song that spontaneously welled up in him on the theme of the forest changing into cultivable lands. Thoughts of no description touch 8 even though primary emotion can blossom into poetry here.

Men of this type will give themselves to superstition and will not be able to question its validity. Loyalty to master, family, property, crew are too sophisticated for them. He who feels is the master, what serves is property, those who are around are kith and kin. Crew is one who happens to be around. Their emotions are still at the level of energy lacking definition of any description. Ideas of no description find an echo in them, not even mercenary gains appeal to their non-existent thoughts. Survival is right and it is their ethic. Organisation is not a concept they can identify, much less follow. Even systems do not evoke their recognition. They will find themselves identified with the plants they plant and the animals they tend. Their own families are for them extended plant and animal life. They love their soil as part of themselves and aspire to be buried where they were born.

Skills of no description can be acquired at this level, even tree climbing. As 7 is not yet born, acquiring any skill, however primary, is out of the question. Sleep is unconscious, dreams are subconscious for them. Skill in another, emotions exhibited pass them without their noticing them, as they do not have faculties to respond to them. The only endowment he has is the primary physical energy that prevents him from being condemned as a human bulk.

8 is in direct touch with 7 and 9 and in indirect touch with 2 and 5. The lives of the warrior or the poet will have in their previous generations men of 8. It receives from 5 and 2. It will be parallel to what the cream receives but will characterise the bottom.

Vitality here is still energy and no sensation. Any sensation here will be physical sensation. What does not create a physical sensation, a man in 8 will not be able to respond to. Loudspeaker, drum beating, blowing the trumpet, etc. are for men of 8. Aldous Huxley says the African drum beating and the Indian chanting will help one lose his intellectuality. "Intellectuals of the world unite, you have nothing to lose but your brains" is his description of chanting and drum beating. Chanting silences the mind, drum beating brings mind to its original physical sensations, one from above and the other from below devastatingly affecting the intellectual prowess of the brain.

Level 9

Level Nine is the pristine, pure physical, even as No. 1 is pure Mind. This is the evolutionary point at which the animal emerges into manhood. What is the bottom most point of manhood is the peak for the animal.

At this point the species has emerged into humanity but has not acquired any capacity as yet that truly belongs to man. It is just there awake. That waking state enables it to move, thus making movement possible. It is not just movement as in the stone or plant, a movement that generates outside. The animal too moves, moves by its vitality. This movement is human movement, movement of the humanised matter. In that sense, it is the greatest achievement of Nature, the evolution of Man. Its parallel now will be the appearance of the Supramental Being on earth. His own movement will not be by thought or will. It would be a self-willed movement uninitiated by thought or unexecuted by human will.

At Nine, movement and sleep are the statuses of consciousness and substance. While on the surface and awake it moves. Withdrawn into itself, the substance is in its response like a newborn baby in the womb of the mother, maybe a newly formed baby. Supramentalisation for the purpose of physical transformation takes place here at the plane of consciousness, for the purpose of the birth of Supramental being in the plane of substance.

Nine has the whole man fully in it, but in unevolved potential, not unformed potential. Nine is not in the least touched by mentality or vitality.

The physical parts of No. 3 and No. 6 are in direct touch with Nine, while it can be in direct touch only with No. 8. Nine thus is the point in man which generates vitality, the vital energies and vital sensations. For that purpose it is the first focus. The freshness of physical matter yet untainted by consciously acquired habits of even physical sensation belongs to Nine.

IN the descent, the influence of all parts from levels 1 to 8 penetrates downwards and reaches Nine too. It is really mentalised only at level 3 where even the flesh becomes sophisticated into the grey matter of the brain.

In the evolutionary scheme of things, when a species emerges, its form is fixed. It does not change later. Its maximum intelligence is given to its members at the very emergence of the species. Nine holds in full potential the maximum intelligence to which man has ever reached and its first exhibition was in the primitive man's fashioning his tools out of stone.

Except at Nine, man is conditioned by sensations of the physical and vital and thought of the mind. For purposes of further evolution, man has to decondition his parts of all the acquired habits even as 9 is fresh without those conditionings.

Supramentalisation and transformation require that unconditioned purity of the being in all parts down to this level 9.

Mother's vision of a seal had that character. SHE describes how that animal was pure, innocent, untouched by the possible perversions of the human mentality that is crooked. Buddhists, whose beliefs and training do not permit them to organise the ego have this character. When talking to them, you feel like talking to one untouched by any influence of this world of ours. Their flesh is soft to touch, carrying the softeness of unspoiled purity. The nearest version of this seen in life is the artless, guileless person incapable of shrewdness or insight. Should it be strong, it will represent the highest culture man can ever attain by purity that is strong. In such a condition, increase of purity leads to increase of strength. Maybe there, strength and purity are synonyms.

To know man in his nine parts is to know him fully. To trace his growth from level 9 to level 1 and back again from 1 to 9 is a knowledge which can hold in it in sum the entire history of man on earth.