Constitution of Man -
The Physical and Psychic Bodies - 3
The subjective polarity of being in the human body never is and never has been inoperative. Indeed it is the impersonal and generic power of "life" itself — life as a power which integrates the multiple elements constituting the entire body. This power is primarily focused at the etheric levels of the physical body, because these constitute the field in which structural factors mainly work. These factors — and through them the formless energy of life (as an agent of the principle of Unity) — need periodic strengthening. They regularly have to recuperate from the demands made on them by the principle of Multiplicity during daily activity, when energy is scattered and the human structure is subject to forces of at least relative "disformation." This recuperation occurs during sleep.
In sleep, objective consciousness ceases except for the mostly, yet not entirely, subjective activity we call dreams. In sleep and the dream state, the ratio between the objective power of the principle of Multiplicity and the subjective power of the principle of Unity shifts away from the ratio manifesting as the state of waking consciousness. The new ratio varies during sleep; hence Hindu psychologist-philosophers distinguish the state of dreaming from that of dreamless sleep. From a practical psychological standpoint, however, what the awakening consciousness retains as dreams usually are representations of activities incited by happenings in the sleeping body, of confused remembrances of events of the preceding days, or symbolic dramatizations (often distorted) of real activities having occurred at the more "spiritual" levels of a mind controlled by the principle of Unity.
A dream is the reflection upon the mind of a periodic and only temporary condition of increased subjectivity that belongs to the realm of objective existence. The death of the physical body, on the other hand, refers to an alteration of the balance between Unity and Multiplicity which, though similar to the dream state, is seemingly irreversible. We say that a person in deep sleep is "dead to the world." But this person awakens, because the principle of Multiplicity predominates in the world of existence to which the person belongs as an embodied system of biological organization. When the strength of the principle of Unity exceeds that of the principle of Multiplicity, the physical body of a human being not only passes into the state of sleep — it dies. The principle of Unity becomes too strong to make life in the biosphere possible. Objective existence is "killed" by too much subjectivity.
The balance between subjectivity and objectivity in a living person is very delicate; it can differ only slightly from the norm of mankind's evolution at the time the person lives. Similarly, the temperature of the human body can deviate from the norm of 98.6 degrees Farenheit (or nearly 37 degrees Centigrade) only plus or minus a very few degrees without death ensuing. Thus a human being can neither sleep too deeply nor be awake too objectively. He or she cannot operate too far away from the prevailing normal balance of subjectivity and objectivity and remain alive in a physical body. The question is, however, whether during physical life a human being may not have another "body" in which normally the factor of subjectivity would be stronger (in relation to that of objectivity) than it is in a physical body. In such a body, the balance between Unity and Multiplicity would differ from that prevailing in the world of physical organisms (that is, in the biosphere).
In a biological organism, the dynamism inherent in the Movement of Wholeness assumes the character and modes of operation of the life force because the ratio between the strengths of the two principles falls within certain limits. As a result a variety of electrical and chemical phenomena occur. If the ratio is altered too greatly, these phenomena cease and we say that life has ended. But the dynamism of the Movement of Wholeness is not altered; it simply operates in another mode. It is a mode of operation which, while still having a well defined objective foundation, is more subjective than the life force operating in the biosphere. I already have spoken of this foundation as the psychism that develops out of the constant interrelatedness human beings experience in the state of culture — that is, as a result of having been born into and conditioned by a culture to which they have become attached.
Psychism is a binding, integrative force that represents a new aspect or mode of operation of the energy of the Movement of Wholeness. While the principle of Unity wanes between the symbolic Midnight and Midday, Noon represents a turning point at which the direction of motion reverses; the principle of Unity begins to rise and to challenge the principle of Multiplicity. A polarization occurs between the Midnight and Noon states. The power of the Godhead (divine Compassion) "projects" itself into the realm of life, and Avatars, in and through whom this "Ray" of compassionate power operates, embody successive "revelations." Through the process of human evolution (presumably over millions of years) each revelation becomes the spiritual foundation of a particular culture-whole and its religion. Each culture-whole provides archetypal forms on which interpersonal and sociocultural relationships are based. Psychism is the collective energy built up by these relationships through centuries.
While the subjective principle is relatively ineffectual in atomic or biological fields of integration, in psychism it is in dynamic ascendance, though still weak. The power of psychism may not be as strong as the binding force in atoms or the power of life in a living organism, but it assumes increasing importance in human evolution and in these terms is as significant as life. The power of psychism integrates persons just as the life force integrates the cells of the body; but psychic integration is more subjective and more subtle. It is, nevertheless, just as binding at its own level of operation; exile from the primitive family circle and tribal community is tantamount to psychic death.
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1983 by Dane Rudhyar
All Rights Reserved
Web design and all data, text and graphics appearing on this site are protected by US and International Copyright and are not to be reproduced, distributed, circulated, offered for sale, or given away, in any form, by any means, electronic or conventional.
for full copyright statement and conditions of use.
Web design copyright © 2000-2004 by Michael R. Meyer.
All Rights Reserved.