Involution and Evolution - The Missing Link

Prof. Asit Munshi Dept. of Economics

With the advent of physical science and particularly its advancement in the 18th and 19th century, materialism had gained much significance in the mind of the younger generation and idealism had been relegated to the background. But what comes to materialise in the real world was first conceived only as an idea. Paramahangsa Yogananda has rightly said, "Whenever you create something new, the initial step is to visualise a model of it in your mind. Then you gather together the materials and finally you construct the tangible image of your idea. In the same manner we and everything in creation are triune : mental ( the idea ) , astral ( the building materials ) and physical ( the gross end product )" [1]. Spiritualism suggests that we are in essence a spirit and this spirit is one and infinite. But we consider ourselves to be a body mind and intelligence complex, where along with the physical body there is a mind consisting of ego (I- awareness) and different thoughts and finally the deciding faculty in us which is called intelligence. We mainly depend upon the five sense organs, eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin that give us five powers of sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch, to get attached to the worldly objects. This makes us happy when we possess those things and we feel unhappy when we fail to possess those things. We have got everything to fulfil our needs, from oxygen to water, shelter and food what not! But we being slave to our sense organs always remain dissatisfied owing that we can not fulfil all our desires. If we could realise ourselves only as a spirit one and infinite we could withdraw ourselves from all worldly attachments and thereby we could remain happy for ever.

This reality is the manifestation of spirit, has also been accepted by the physical scientists. Einstein has told, "Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit manifest in the laws of the universe, a spirit vastly superior to that of man" [2]. He also has mentioned, "Everything is determined by forces over which we have no control. It is determined for the insect as well for the star. Human beings, vegetables, or cosmic dust - we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible piper" [3]. We the common people call the highest spirited self and the invisible piper by the code name 'God'. B.D.Josephson, Nobel laureate of physics has told "We would say really the whole structure of science, once we get to the quantum level (where the manifest order makes observable order) would be directly the result of God's presence and works" [4]. Sir Rojer Penrose,the world famous mathematical physicist of Oxford University has told, "I would say the universe has a purpose, it is not there somehow by chance" [5]. He also has told "One has an extraordinarily highly organized ordered initial state of the universe. Otherwise we wouldn't have the second law of thermodynamics. This law is a consequence of the fact that the Universe is in a highly organized state and is subject to gradual degradations as time evolves.....How is that this highly organized state could have originated from a random like explosion?" [6]. We have come to know that material things emerge from a condensed state of energy that takes three different forms of gaseous liquid and solid states. The physical scientists have also found a fundamental energy as the source of all different types of energy expressed in the universe.

How 'spirit" got converted into energy is the field of research of the spiritual scientists, who by meditation could surpass the entire field of causal relationship bound by time-space- person to an abstract state. They have realized that there is a witness state of the self as spirit in equanimity , a state of non-vibration and singularity from which the multiplicity had emerged just to escape the loneliness of being singular to enjoy the bliss of diversity by ensuring variety. That state of equanimity was a state of absolute consciousness that reduced to multiplicity with self contraction and vibration, that can be thought of like a frozen state of ice over the mountain range which got melted and divided, coming down taking the form of different streams, rivers etc. to be ultimately merged into the sea.

In spiritualism the witness self in its transcendental state has been given the name 'Parabrahaman' in Sanskrit language that came to universal or cosmic state as universal-being/cosmic-being, referred by the name 'Ishwara'/'God'. In generation (creation) it had the name 'Brahman' in sustenance named 'Vishnu' and in destruction 'Maheshwara'. These three parts of the self with their three counter parts of energy namely 'Brahmani' 'Vaishnavi' and 'Maheshwari' descended to the universe as creative energy, maintaining energy and destructive energy. This constituted the initial phase of involution. In its later phase the super-conscious cosmic being got divided into individual beings namely Avatar Purusha/ Mahapurusha having fully blossomed consciousness to general man and woman with developed consciousness. In its later stage came animals and birds ( budding consciousness) followed by insects and pests (dormant consciousness) to plants and the microbes with consciousness covered and at last to lifeless matter where consciousness has been absent. Thus involution ends. After this phase of involution evolution came. Under favourable circumstances life appeared in matters and initially consciousness was covered, that developed into dormant consciousness to budding consciousness and further in developed consciousness to fully blossomed consciousness to super-consciousness state. Involution shows how the eternal became temporal and evolution shows how temporal transcends to eternity, if we are willing to move from human consciousness to a state of super consciousness. Hence tangibility and eternity can be considered as reality that can be perceived by us at different levels of consciousness and involution can be considered to be the missing link of evolution whereby idealism gets interwoven with materialism.


1) Paramahansa Yogananda, Man's Eternal Quest Vol-1 , p-271.
2) The Expanded Quotable Einstein, Alice Calaprice,2000 p-211.
4) Science and Religion :How to make synthesis, B.D. Josephason, in Seven Nobel Laureates, B-1.04,p-63.
5) A Brief History of Time (movie), Rojer Penrose.
6) Discussion between Sir Rojer Penrose & Srimad Bhakti Swarup Damodar Swami, Oxford University June- 11, 2004, Sabignanam,vol-3,B-1,2005,p-36.

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