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Behind the Gross the Subtle, Behind the Subtle the Causal
Behind the outer, grosser experience lies the subtler, finer experience, from which the outer has sprung. And within the subtle can be found the template for the gross. Even in the childhood of a great spiritual teacher, you can see the mark of one whose mission it is to bring light to mankind. And when you apprehend this underlying subtle quality of that being, you clearly see how it has shaped every aspect of that life through all its outer manifestations and through every major period of life.
There is another state that transcends both the gross and the subtle. That is the causal. The causal state does not have any movement; it does not undergo any change. Within it is to be found the self-effulgent light of the atma. It is because of this all-pervasive light of the atma shining in and through the causal state that you are able to experience the mental and the physical worlds. If there were no subtle mental world there could be no gross physical world for you. But, if there were no causal, there would be neither subtle mental nor gross physical worlds for you. To realize your divine state, your journey has to take you from the physical through the mental to the causal. Your truth is rooted in the causal. You must use the physical to reach the mental and the mental to reach the causal.
Ultimately, it is the light of the atma, the indweller, which activates and vitalizes all of these states of experience. The atma is the source and the substratum of all three worlds. In the ocean you will find waves and swells and foam on the surface, large-scale currents below the surface and the stillness of the deep ocean regions, far below. The waves and foam, the currents, and the deep ocean waters are not different. Water is the common element which interpenetrates all of them. But, it appears as if the waves, the currents and the deep ocean are different.
In the phenomenal world also, you have to discover the common element that underlies all experience and unifies the physical, the mental and the causal worlds. You can associate these three universes with the three states of consciousness. You can think of the waking state as the physical, the dream-state as the mental, and the deep-sleep state as the causal. Beyond these three states, interpenetrating them and common to all of them, is a fourth state. That is the superconscious state, the transcendental state. The unconscious state of deep-sleep is associated with the causal. It has a very profound quality of peace. But by itself, the deep-sleep state will not provide you with a permanent experience of real bliss. The bliss is there but you are not conscious of it. It is only after you come back to the waking-state from deep sleep that you remember the serene feeling of total rest you were enjoying. However, in the super conscious state, you will be able to enjoy eternal peace and bliss, and be fully conscious of it always.