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From Man Human to Man Divine

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Item Code: NAZ559
Author: Jugal Kishore Mukherjee
Publisher: Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry
Language: English
Edition: 2007
ISBN: 9788170582335
Pages: 251
Other Details 9.00 X 6.00 inch
Weight 380 gm
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Book Description

The book From Man Human to Man Divine bears an unusual title and, as the title indicates, it deals with the evolutionary destiny of man. Man’s past, present and future have been thoroughly dis- cussed here in the wide perspective of the total earthly existence. Some cardinal problems besetting man’s advance in his present evolutionary status have been put into focus, analysed in all their ramifications and then their probable evolutionary solutions deli- neated, based on the revelations made by the great seer-philo- sopher Sri Aurobindo. Nothing is here offered as mere dogmatic assertions to be either accepted or rejected according to the pre- dilections of individual readers. Every solution has been presented as the natural and inevitable conclusion to be drawn from the relevant data gathered from different fields. It is for the readers to judge whether the discussions entered into in this book are professionally rigorous, logically valid and honest in presentation. The book is primarily meant for the unbiased and open-minded intellectuals. At every step of its meandering discussions, the book challenges the reader with new and bold and unconventional ideas and invites him to think afresh and then come to his own con- clusions. The author will feel his efforts highly rewarded if it is found that he has been able to communicate to even a few of his readers a part of the intellectual thrill he personally experienced while composing the various chapters of this book.

In course of our sinuous discussions and deliberations, we have had to touch upon a great number of connected issues and questions; the unwary reader, while perusing the book for the first time, may feel like counting the individual trees but missing the wood as a whole. To obviate this difficulty we have felt it advisable to prelude the main body of the book with this preliminary chapter "A View, in Advance, of What the Book is About’. A glance through these pages will help the readers to keep track of the central motif of the book through all its multifarious elaboration. This introductory chapter has been constituted of a series of key- passages culled from various chapters of the book.

In our times man has tended to become the central theme of almost all philosophical thinking. The outlook of the present age is essentially humanistic. The world has become impatient with every system of thought that fails to give primacy to man and his insistent problems.

But what is this human individual? He seems to have a multiple essence. He is in nature; he is in history. He obviously belongs to the material realm but also to the biological; not merely to the biological, but also to the social: he is indeed a socio-moral creature. It may well be that there are other deeper and higher realms to which he belongs, of which he is not aware as yet.

Darwin has taught that man has evolved from the humblest form of life by a process of natural selection that was quite automatic; and, in particular, ‘‘instead of Adam, our ancestry is traced to the most grotesque of creatures!’ Well, it may very well be so, so far as the past of man is concerned. But what about his future? Looking intently around, a thinking man cannot but be puzzled with a lot of intriguing questions:

Is there at all a meaning behind this colossal world-existence? Of what worth is the individual man in this immense cosmic drama? Does his existence bear any relevance here? Is there any sense and purpose behind the march of humanity, and if so, what is it? What should be the goal of man the individual and of the human race? Is there any truth in the notion of human free-will, or is man a mere creature of circumstances? What is meant after all by God or the Absolute? Does he exist at all? And if he exists, is there any way of contacting him? What should be the proper relation of man the individual to other individuals and to the community of men? How can he realise his age-old dream of three basic harmonies: cosmical harmony between man and world, social harmony between man and man and bio-psychical harmony within man himself? And, finally, what about death, that dreadful, ineluctable eventuality? Does it set to nought and mock with a derisive laughter all the hopes and aspirations, toils and striving of the individual man?

Then, again, it is well understood that man as a species has been the latest and so far the last product of biological evolution. But does he represent absolutely the end-product of it? Has the pro- cess of evolution ceased to be operative upon earth? Or, who knows, it is still continuing, albeit in a new form!

"It is not ego-centric on the part of man to consider himself the most highly evolved creature in nature. But any tendency to con- sider himself its end-product would be short-sighted, for evolution is taking place today faster than ever before. Physical evolution has been almost completely short-circuited by man as applied to himself. But social, emotional and mental evolution are now carrying him on to ever greater complexity and awareness."’

But a further, may be virtually infinite, extension of the social, emotional and mental capacities and capabilities, is that all that is in store for the human race? Can there not be a far more glorious future for our wonderful species? Can there not be a further phase of evolution? Indeed, may we not pertinently raise the query: just as the inorganic phase of evolution was followed by the biological phase wherein ‘life invaded the material sheath’, just as towards the close of the biological phase the cerebral cortex began to be elaborated and with it ‘earth-plasm first quivered with the illu- mining Mind’, just as again at the end of the biological phase, with the development of the cerebrum, evolution started on a new course when ‘man was moulded from the original brute’, similarly now, with the attainment of maturity by man, evolution may very well turn another leaf and pass on to an altogether new phase: the supra-mental sector of world-manifestation. For surely man, as he is now constituted, is too imperfect a creature to be deemed the final possible product of evolution. No doubt, man is the crown of all that has been so far done, but creation’s eonine labour cannot be finally justified with him; he can, by no stretch of imagination, be conferred the honour of being Nature’s last poise. And, as Sri Aurobindo has so beautifully put it in Savitri (Book II, Canto V, p. 166).

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

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