Psychoanalysis

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(Sri Aurobindo:) “I find it difficult to take these psycho-analysts at all seriously when they try to scrutinise spiritual experience by the flicker of their torch-lights, — yet perhaps one ought to, for half- knowledge is a very powerful thing and can be a great obstacle to the coming in front of the true Truth. This new psychology looks to me very much like children learning some summary and not very adequate alphabet, exulting in putting their a-b-c-d of the subconscient and the mysterious underground super-ego together and imagining that their first book of obscure beginnings (c-a-t = cat, t-r-e-e = tree) is the very heart of the real knowledge. They look from down up and explain the higher lights by the lower obscurities; but the foundation of these things is above and not below, upari budhna eṣām. The superconscient, not the subconscient, is the true fountain of things.”[1]


(Sri Aurobindo:) “In order to reject anything from the being one has first to become conscious of it, to have the clear inner experience of its action and to discover its actual place in the workings of the nature. One can then work upon it to eliminate it, if it is an entirely wrong movement, or to transform it if it is only the degradation of a higher and true movement. It is this or something like it that is attempted crudely and improperly with a rudimentary and insufficient knowledge in the system of psychoanalysis. The process of raising up the lower movements into the full light of consciousness in order to know and deal with them is inevitable; for there can be no complete change without it. But it can truly succeed only when a higher light and force are sufficiently at work to overcome, sooner or later, the force of the tendency that is held up for change.”[2]


(Sri Aurobindo:) “First, one should make the higher mind and vital strong and firm and full of light and peace from above; afterwards one can open up or even dive into the subconscious with more safety and some chance of a rapid and successful change.”[3]


(Sri Aurobindo:) “Always therefore one should begin by a positive, not a negative experience, by bringing down something of the divine nature, calm, light, equanimity, purity, divine strength into the parts of the conscious being that have to be changed; only when that has been sufficiently done and there is a firm positive basis, is it safe to raise up the concealed subconscious adverse elements in order to destroy and eliminate them by the strength of the divine calm, light, force and knowledge.”[4]


(Arya Maloney:) “A new psychology which recognizes the centrality of the soul in the healing process will discover that contact with this center:

  • can be directly accessed through the body.
  • amplifies the healing of mental, emotional and physical problems.
  • extends the capacities of mind, emotions and body.
  • integrates mind, body and emotions.
  • liberates us from identification with mind, body and emotions.
  • bridges psychotherapy and spiritual practice.
  • reveals an interdependent universe.”[5]




  1. Letters on Yoga – IV, p.615
  2. Ibid., p.614
  3. Ibid., p.613
  4. Ibid., p.615
  5. Arya Maloney, Alchemy of the Soul, p.27, “The Body and Psycho-Spiritual Process”


See also