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The Inner / Subtle Being

Infinite Bliss and Delight
Divine Soul
Inner Being
Outer Being

Meaning of the Term

The term "Inner Being" is used here as the Inner Being sensu Sri Aurobindo.

The Nature of Inner Consciousness

Just as one ascends through the "vertical" Universes, from Physical to Astral/Affective to Ideational/Spiritual, and even beyond, so the progression from the Outer to the Inner and finally the Innermost Being is also a mystical path to Divine Light, Truth, and Love.

The ordinary mundane consciousness and existence pertains to the Outer Being only.  This is the usual state of the person who is ruled by the ego and considers him or her self seperate from the rest of creation, and so strives for his or her own needs alone, either not considering, or else subordinating, the needs of others.   But once we enter the Inner Being we have a new phenomena, relative to ordinary existence; the transcendence of egotism.  The yogi and mystic therefore tend to explore by going inwards, to the Inner Being.  The further one progresses in this direction, the more selfless and truely spiritual one becomes.

Included realities

Adding the "Vertical" dimensions of consciousness means that at least three Inner Universes ande states of being can be posited. There are also of course further higher ones, progressing to the Manifest Godhead, but these pertain to higher stages of Revelation and Illumination that are not often attained. Adding the Emanational axis gives Gross, Subtle, and Causal, as well as more transcendent regions. In all these cases, the further from the physical one progresses, the harder and rarer it is for the embodied consciousness to attain these spiritual summits. Those who have attained such states are generally reverred as "Masters" or "Enlightened".

The three "vertical" regions or subregions referred to here are:

Because the microcosm consists of a Physical/Etheric, an Emotional, and a Mental component, there are a number of different Inner Being experiences and realities, each represented by a particular spiritual path.

The Inner Mental is experienced through meditation and one-pointedness, clarity and focus of mind.  The most effective technique to access this dimensional of being is the Theravada practice of Vipassana meditation. Very similiar is the Soto Zen path of meditation and gradual Enlightenment.  Eventually, through these techniques, one is said to break through to the transcendent dimension.

The Inner Emotional is the experience of wholesome positive emotions, or even Divine Love.  On the Physical body level we have phenomena like rebirthing and primal screaming, which temporarily clear out emotional blockages.  On the etheric Emotional body level there is the approach of devotional mysticism, represented by the Sufi way of the Heart, Contemplative Christianity, and Hindu Bhakti-yoga.

The Inner Physical is experienced through the activation of the inner ch'i energy, as in Taoist Internal Alchemy yoga [1].

All these techniques pertain to the inner dimensions of the psychophysical faculties.  On a more subtle level, the Inner Mental corresponds to "the opening of the third eye", and the Inner Emotional to "the opening of the heart chakra". This leads us to the more innermost Subtle being, and ultimately to the Causal and beyond (the Primary or Archetypal Chakras)

Through continual occult development that part of the being that is closest to the Augoeides or Higher Self becomes transformed by it, and constitutes a sort of perfected Inner Being.  This is more or less the "vehicle of the (Divine) Soul" of Neoplatonism (sometimes called the "astral body" - okhmea asteroides), and the "Causal body" of Theosophy.

The three "emanational" regions or subregions are:

In addition, there is the epistemic axis, from samsara to enlightenment

It may be that the Inner Reality and the Enlightenment experience have a synergistic relationship, so at this level enloightenment is not just epistemological (as it is in the Outer Gross being or ordinary consciousness) but ontoloogical as well, involving a metamorphosis of the whole being. There are also innumerable transitional experiences, especially if the enlightenment is not integral.


[1] Mantak and Maneewan Chia, Awaken Healing Light of the Tao, Fusion of the Five Elements I, and other books by Mantak Chia.


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content by M.Alan Kazlev
page created 8 November 1998, relocated 24 November 2005, last modified 29 November