Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet - Correcting the Error of Excluding Time from True Nature & Paths of Self-Realization

In an article I published on 30 Jan 2012, 'The Error of Excluding Time from True Nature & Paths of Self-R...', I posted the following excerpts of the writings of Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet. These quotes, along with the rest of the articles are meant 'to give readers some idea of how our current time-consciousness can be upgraded, re-oriented and expanded to connect us with our True Nature, rather than dismissing Time because our time-consciousness has yet to break the bounds of our physical, vital or mental being. Because if each world has its own consciousness and experience of space and time, then certainly the supramental consciousness and experience of space and time is something that can and should be realized in the quest for full Self-Knowledge or Self-Realization.'

‘[The Supramental being's] time consciousness ... will be different from that of the mental being, not swept helplessly on the stream of the moments and clutching at each moment as a stay and a swiftly disappearing standpoint, but founded first on its eternal identity beyond the changes of time, secondly on a simultaneous eternity of Time in which past, present and future exist together for ever in the self-knowledge and self-power of the Eternal, thirdly, in a total view of the three times as one movement singly and indivisibly seen even in their succession of stages, periods, cycles, last ‒ and that only in the instrumental consciousness ‒ in the step by step evolution of the moments. It will therefore have the knowledge of the three times, trikaladristi ‒ held of old to be a supreme sign of the seer and the Rishi, ‒ not as anabnormal power, but as its normal way of time knowledge.


‘This unified and infinite time consciousness and this vision and knowledge are the possession of the supramental being in its own supreme region of light and are complete only on the highest levels of the supramental nature.

Sri Aurobindo, The Synthesis of Yoga,
‘Towards a Supramental Vision of Time’



Question: Sweet Mother, can one go out of Time and Space?


The Mother: If one goes out of the manifestation.


It is the fact of objectivisation, of manifestation which has created time and space. To go out of it one must return to the origin, that is, go out of the manifestation. Otherwise from the very first objectivisation time and space were created.


There is a feeling or a perception or an experience of eternity and infinity in which one has the impression of going out of time and space .… It is only an impression.


One must pass beyond all forms, even the most subtle forms of consciousness, far beyond the forms of thought, the forms of consciousness, to be able to have this impression of being outside space and time. This is what generally happens to people who enter into samadhi – the true samadhi – and when they come back to their normal consciousness, they don’t remember anything, for, in fact, there was nothing they could remember. This is what Sri Aurobindo says here: If Brahman were only an impersonal abstraction, the one reasonable end would be annihilation. For it is obvious that if one goes out of time and space, all separate existence automatically ceases.


There, now. So one can, without much result!


‒ The Mother, Question and Answers,
2 January 1957


‘If the Transcendent is unmoving and imperishable due to its otherworldliness, or its poise beyond and outside of the cosmos, then we encounter a particular aspect of its nature which has been the bed-rock of Indian spirituality from time immemorial. This is indivisibility. Given the fact that it is a homogeneous Consciousness beyond the planes of existence in which division occurs, it stands that this Transcendent is hence indivisible. Consequent to this we know that this perception offers the most compelling aspect of the Absolute: its unity, its oneness. Yet with this appreciation many of the paradoxes which face the human spirit arise; and due to this unity, oneness and indivisibility, it can be shown how until now no path has truly bridged the chasm that this experience of transcendent indivisibility and unity has created in our spiritual experience. And it is precisely because of this chasm that the highest Vision has been withheld from the seeker. For to bridge this intriguing chasm is to resolve the paradoxes.

'The main aspect of the paradox is this: If the Transcendent or Static Brahman is indeed indivisible, then it stands that none of the experiences seekers have until now had of Its poise beyond and out of the moving cosmic dimension have been faithful to the truest and highest Truth. They have been real and overwhelming experiences, but they have suffered from a severe limitation. This limitation resides exclusively in the fact that any experience of the Transcendent which does not include the totality of Itself must be, to a certain extent, deceiving. For we cannot divide the indivisible.’ …


‘It must be stated that this discovery is the key that unlocks those iron doors which do not permit entry into Mahakala’s [Time’s] sanctum sanctorum, and hence withhold from us the true meaning of life and death and our purpose in this material creation.

‘We cannot divide that which is indivisible. This means then that there can be no true experience of those attributes that have been here enumerated of the Absolute which introduce the element of division.


‘Thus the Transcendent’s stasis can never be disconnected from its kinesis which in any case arises in its own Being. Likewise, its imperishability must contain within it the elements of all that is created, preserved and destroyed.’


‒ Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet, Time and Imperishability, Part I,

‘Transcendence and the Immanence of the One’


[Additional note: The full article is a critique of A. H. Almaas's video inquiry (shown at the 2011 Science and NonDuality conference in San Rafael, CA) on 'What is Time?]

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Comment by Capt. Anand Kumar on February 2, 2012 at 11:28pm

Indeed it does. Thanks Lori.

Would I be correct in assuming that consciousness manifests itself through forms, from subtle to gross?

Comment by Lori Tompkins on February 2, 2012 at 11:01pm

Hi Anand, I think all forms are forms of consciousness. The Mother is describing a range of form, from the subtle (not visible I suppose) to thought forms, to material forms. Does that make sense?

Comment by Capt. Anand Kumar on February 2, 2012 at 9:05pm

Thank You Lori. I find the Mother's quotes always inspiring. Would you kindly clarify the following:

One must pass beyond all forms, even the most subtle forms of consciousness, far beyond the forms of thought, the forms of consciousness, to be able to have this impression of being outside space and time.

Does consciousness have forms? What are those?

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