If you’re a meditator, an integral theorist, a healer, a practitioner of personal development practices, a helper in the service industry, an academic or a coach, a lover or a parent, you may realize that one of your primary activities is to serve development. In these roles we serve the development of ourselves, individuals, couples, groups, families, communities, and cultures.
In fact, in any of these roles, you are a key part of the evolution of human consciousness. No matter what kind of support you choose to offer, your embodiment sets as an example for others of what is possible. Your embodiment serves the development of human consciousness in everyone around you, and therefore serves the development of human consciousness as a whole.
While we hope to contribute to human development and human evolution, how does the topic of Involution / Evolution relate? What is Involution? What is Evolution?
The perspective that we’re going to call Involution / Evolution is a perspective that can help you to:
• Understand human development relative to the evolution of consciousness as a whole
• Be more effective as you take a conscious, active role in human development, and therefore, the evolution of consciousness
• See more clearly the evolution of consciousness as it expresses itself through humanity
• Find more compassion for current states of development in yourself, individuals, groups, communities and cultures around the world.
This particular article uses one approach to point to the phenomena of Involution / Evolution. You can find others in the TIA(tm) Coach Certification Program.
What expression of Involution / Evolution makes the most sense to you? What is Involution / Evolution?
How would you describe Involution / Evolution in your own words?
Involution / Evolution – The Cycle of Creation
Imagine a flow of creation over time that descends from the stuff of the Universe into life as we know it, and back up again into cosmic star stuff.
Let’s begin with something you may have experienced in peak transpersonal states or in meditations – nothingness, stillness, the place of pure emptiness that is absolutely full of potential and capacity to create.
Let’s give a name to this pregnant-with-potential unformed soup of possibility – let’s call it Source. Some call this Source stuff nothingness, or “God”. Some call it, “Ain Soph Aur”. There are many names. We can just call it Source. Everywhere and nowhere in particular (omnipresent), in all things but no one thing at all, absolutely full of capacity (omnipotent), of all things but no one thing (omniscient), we have the infinite stillness ready to render all of Creation.
While nothing in the universe sits still, neither does Source. Within the undulating, whirling movement of Source, we find pulses, vibrations. Vibrations coming together make even more complex patterns of vibrations, some amplifying each other, some crossing perfectly at the nodal points, some cancelling each other out entirely.
Where the fullness of unformed possibility held no form, through vibration and spirals we begin to find increasingly complex clusters of energy, like whirlpools in the ocean. The whirlpool isn’t separate from the ocean, yet we see the crystallization of movement and we can identify it as “whirlpool”. We see the apparent boundary between the complexity of coherence in the center, and the slower movement around the edges, and we say, “whirlpool”. Yet if the movement were to stop, there would be nothing again but the full potential of standing water, ready to be undulated and spun up into waves and whirlpools again.
So too let’s imagine the infinite expanse of unformed Source, undulating, vibrating, spinning, engaging direction and spirals and movement and increasingly complex patterns of coherence in the Stuff of Itself.
Spinning star-stuff makes a complexity of vibration we call, “light”. Scientists are mystified how light (photons) can behave both as a wave and as a particle. Yet this is absolutely obvious; as Source undulates, it “waves”; as waves crystallize into more and more dense and complex forms, it appears to us as “particle”. Seeing “particles” is no different than seeing “whirlpools” in the ocean.
When we crystallize even more coherent patterns of vibration from light into denser forms, we find sound. (Some have referred to this first sound as “Om”, or the sound that created the universe, or “the word of God”.)
Even more crystallized, we find subatomic particles like electrons. Science is mystified that electrons can be mathematically proven to be everywhere at once, then appear where the observer expects the electron to appear. This is absolutely normal. The “electron cloud” is nothing more than the coherence of whirling stuff, and as we add thought (another complex wave form) to the mix, we have a crystallization arising in one “place” that we anticipate.
As increasingly more and more dense coherence patterns form, first we observe patterns of vibration and spin that we call “atoms”, then patterns that we call “particles”. Liquids and gases and solids appear to form in (and of) the expanse of pregnant stillness. Water forms. Vapor forms. Ice forms. Gravity draws collisions to ever dense centers. Heavily dense centers magnetically explode and throw off matter as stars or pulsars.
This “particle stuffs” (liquids, gases, and solids) collide and mix in space, combining to make asteroids, stars, planets, moons and other cosmic phenomena. Cyclical spinning and increasingly coherent patterns of stuff come together and soon there are proteins and DNA. The miracle of life finally emerges, formed of ever increasingly complex combinations of vibration and movement that we call “the material realm”, “the universe”.
Science describes evolution as the progression through the branches of development, from bacteria to swimming cold-blooded creatures to crawling cold-blooded creatures to warm-blooded swimming and crawling creatures to four-legged mammals to two-legged ones, to apes to Neanderthals to human beings as we know us.
But ultimately, all of this life is made of that same Source substance of unformed, omnipresent, omniscient, omnipotent nothingness. Stars are made of Source stuff. You are literally made of star stuff, Source stuff.
As above, so below – and God made man in His own image. Literally, we are made up of God, we are coherent particles of God and God is within us. Or, if you prefer – we are made up of Source stuff, we are coherent particles of Source stuff and Source stuff is within us.
Many traditions say that one of the most beautiful, sacred places to be is “in the middle”. The place where it is neither ocean nor shore, we see lovely waves crashing, undulating, and frothing. At the border between the ocean floor and volcanic eruptions under the ocean, bacteria gather and multiply, feeding off the energy and the heat while cooling themselves in the ocean. Life thrives in this “middle place”.
We are this “middle place” – the place where consciousness has condensed into manifest form. Here Consciousness begins its upward climb back to God – as Consciousness in the form of humans we seek Self-awareness, we seek Self-actualization. We strive to understand ourselves, the universe and God. We seek communion with ourselves, each other, and God. We seek our highest capacities, first in the form of large kingdoms, then in the form of large buildings, now in the form of reaching for our Highest Selves.
Consciousness, first omnipresent, omniscient and omnipotent, sought separation for the joy of Experiencing, only to find the Experiencer seeking again the fullness of stillness, presence, and Self-awareness on the meditation cushion.
Then, as we die, our coherent patterns called “bodies” melt away again into the stuff of the Earth and the universe.
Involution is the downward progression from the infinite expanse of pregnant Source nothingness into dense, coherent patterns of Creation; Source becoming Manifest Reality.
Some call this “fallen angels”. Some call this “fall from grace”. Source “chooses” into “experiencing” – Oneness separates off parts into duality and multiplicity so that each part has a unique experience; so that the eyeball can finally come back to seeing itself. We are that eyeball seeing Consciousness evolving. We are that eyeball, seeking to see and know God as we seek to see and know our Highest Selves.
Evolution is that upward progression from Creation back to the Source; the progeny returning to our Maker. Evolution is “reality” (in the form of what we call consciousness) realizing (re-membering) its relationship with/to/as Source.
Or to put it in more physical terms:
Involution is purest vibration (for example, the stuff we call light/love) coalescing down into increasingly dense, finite, “experiencing” forms. Infinite stillness and formless density moves into forming vibration and love and light and waves of sound and sub-atomic particles and atoms and particles and planets and DNA and microbes and fish and mammals.
Evolution is the movement over time from pluralistic “experiencing” forms into increasingly capable forms such that Consciousness re-finds itself at Home. Humans grow to seeking Highest Self, and in that quest we find not only our Divine nature, but we “re-member” (bring back into the body) communion with Source itself.