Systems of Yoga and their Synthesis1
Sri Aurobindo defines Yoga as the methodized effort towards self-perfection by the expression of the potentialities latent in the being and a union of the human individual with the universal and transcendent Existence we see partially expressed in man and in the Cosmos. The commencement of yoga is characterized by the point of contact of the human individual consciousness with the higher and profounder states of consciousness that can ultimately lead to the universal and transcendent Existence. That contact normally takes the form of concentration, and concentration implies a process of purification and a process of renunciation. For it is impurities and mixtures in our consciousness that are the causes of distractions in our consciousness, which prevent concentration; again, it is attachment to one ordinary object or the other on account of preference or attraction that causes distraction and deviation from the central object on which we need to concentrate. It is by the process of concentration that our complex and intricately organized consciousness can be led to the contact with the integral Divine Object. The contact may be effected in the physical through the body as in the Hatha Yoga;2 it may be effected in the vital and in the mind through the action of those functionings which determine the states and experiences of our nervous being, as in Raja Yoga;3 again, it may be effected through the mentality, by means of the emotional heart, as in Bhakti Yoga, or through the active will, as in Karma Yoga, or through the understanding mind, as in
Jnana Yoga.4 But the contact can also be established by a general conversion of the mental consciousness in all its activities. Or it may equally be accomplished through a direct awakening to the universal or transcendent Truth and Bliss by the conversion of the central ego in the mind. In the synthesis of yoga, one can begin with any one of these processes, but in the course of the development, it can be seen that in the integral view of things all these processes tend to unify and the total conscious being comes to be concentrated on the integral object of synthesis. This method of all-receiving concentration consists of a natural organization of the highest processes and movements of which the nature is capable. Every individual offers helpful materials, which are all to be used for gradually intensive and purposeful working, and every individual offers the obstacles which are to be overcome by process of purification, renunciation and perfection. In a sense, therefore, each man in this path has his own method of yoga, even though there are certain broad lines of working common to all which favour the construction of scientific method of this synthetic yoga.
What is Synthesis?
The idea of a synthesis may present an image of an indiscriminating combination of all the principal yogic schools. But this would be confusion. Sometimes, there is an image of juxtaposition of the principal yogic schools and their methods; but this also would be confusion and an impracticable and an unintelligent bundling of disparate elements without any principle of integration or centrality of any common principle. Even the successive practice of the aims and methods of each of the principal yogic schools would imply a great deal of waste of labour and the resulting process would be cumbrous and would be even injurious. Sri
Aurobindo's and the Mother's synthesis of yoga or integral yoga is an organic synthesis that seizes on the central principle of concentration which is common to all systems of yoga and which will include and utilize in the right place and proportion their particular principles, and on the central dynamic force which is the common secret of their divergent methods and capable, therefore, of organizing a natural selection and combination of their varied energies and different utilities. As a result, this synthesis is able to neglect the forms and outsides of the specific systems of yoga. Apart from the utilization of the central principle of concentration which is common to all, the synthesis consists of the flexible utilization of the methods of the awakening of the Soul and Purusha-consciousness as in the Vedanta and the methods of purification and perfection of the body, life and mind, which are the products of the working of the Shakti or Prakriti as in Tantra.
In the Vedantic systems of yoga, the central place is assigned to the Purusha, the Conscious Soul that knows, observes, attracts, and governs. In Tantra, the method is led by Prakriti, the Nature-Soul, the Energy, the Will-in-Power, executive in the universe. In the Vedantic methods of yoga, the emphasis is on the method of knowledge in which discernment is made between the essential and phenomenal; this discernment may be made by the intellect or by the heart expressed in love and faith or by the will working out through action. In the Vedantic methods, the attempt is to draw back from manifested Nature (Prakriti) so as to awaken the Conscious Soul (Purusha), and then, the Purusha can uplift the individual who is entangled in bondage to the manifestations of Prakriti in the mind, life and body. This method is the opposite of the method of the Tantra, where
one does not draw back from manifested Nature and its difficulties, but one confronts them, seizes them, purifies them, perfects them, and conquers them. It is true that in the course of the development of the Tantric yoga, its principle was largely lost in its machinery and became a thing of formulae of occult mechanisms, which are indeed powerful when rightly used, but which can fall more easily from the clarity of their original intention. In the synthesis of the Vedanta and Tantra, both Purusha and Prakriti are admitted. As a result, the integrating method that is developed is to put our whole conscious being (soul and Prakriti) into relation and contact with the Divine and to call Him in to transform our entire being into His, so that in a sense, God Himself, the real Person in us, becomes the Yogin who practises the discipline by which perfection, siddhi, is attained. In psychological terms, this method translates itself into the progressive surrender of the ego with its whole field and all its apparatus to the One who is beyond the ego, who is vast and incalculable and yet inevitable in His workings.
As Sri Aurobindo points out, the synthesis of his yoga starts from the method of Vedanta to arrive at the aim of the Tantra.5 The Tantra accepts that there are two poles of being whose essential unity is a secret of existence. These two poles are Purusha and Prakriti or Brahman and Shakti. Shakti is the power of Brahman or rather Brahman is Shakti. It is Shakti that has manifested and, at the human level, we experience it as Nature that is seen to be active in body, life and mind. The method of the Tantra is to raise nature (Prakriti or Shakti) in man into manifest power of the spirit, and the important point of the synthesis of the Tantra is that it is the whole nature that the Tantra gathers up for the spiritual conversion. It includes, therefore, in its system the
yoga of the body, the Hatha Yoga, and it pursues the forceful Hathayogic process and especially the opening up of the nervous centers and the passage through them of the awakened Shakti on her way to her union with the Brahman. It also includes in its system the operations of the subtle body and subtle elements of consciousness, and purifies them and leads them by the processes of meditation and concentration by the methods of Raja Yoga to their highest point available in the state of Samadhi. It also aims at purification and development and perfection of the intellect, will-force, and the motive power of devotion by resorting to the processes of Jnana Yoga, Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga. Tantra goes even farther and it subjects the main springs of human quality, desire and action to an intensive discipline; as a result, it seeks to attain the soul's mastery over human motives, and it also aims at the elevation of these motives to a diviner spiritual level as its final utility. Finally, it does not aim merely at liberation (mukti) but also cosmic enjoyment of the power of the Spirit (bhukti); thus the Tantric system is rendered much bolder and larger than the Vedantic schools of yoga.
Sri Aurobindo's synthesis of yoga, even though it includes the aims of the Tantra, lays its initial stress upon the method of Vedanta, where the raising of human consciousness towards its heights is sought to be effected by the operation of the Purusha consciousness or Brahman consciousness; and with the progression of the yoga, the principle of progressive surrender to the Shakti which is so central in the Tantra, also becomes central, — but with full recognition that the Shakti is the power of and is herself Purushottama. In the Tantra, the initial stress is laid on starting from the bottom, and there is a rise on the ladder
through grades of ascent upward to the summit; therefore, the Tantra begins with the action of the awakened Shakti in the nervous system of the body and its centers, and it strives to open up the six lotuses located in the grades of the ladder of the ranges of the power of the Spirit. In Sri Aurobindo's synthesis of yoga, the emphasis is upon man as a spirit in mind much more than a spirit in body and assumes in him the capacity to begin on that level, to spiritualise his being by the power of the soul in mind opening itself directly to a higher spiritual force and being and to perfect by that higher force so possessed and brought into action the whole of his nature.
In order to work out this process, this yoga utilizes the powers of soul in mind and turns the triple key of knowledge, works and love in the locks of the spirit. And here, too, the natural principles of the harmony of this triple key are recognized and utilized for the organic synthesis. These principles include knowledge as the foundation, love as the crown, and action as the inevitable expression of the unity of the foundational knowledge and crowning mystery of love. The Hatha yogic methods can be dispensed with, although there would be no objection to their partial use. The methods of Raja Yoga also would enter in only as an informal element. The methods of this yoga aim at arriving by the shortest way at the largest development of spiritual power and being and divinize by it a liberated nature in the whole range of human living.
In Sri Aurobindo's synthesis of yoga, the spirit in man is regarded not as solely an individual being traveling to a transcendent unity with the Divine, but a universal being capable of oneness with the divine in all souls and all-Nature with all its practical consequences.
As Sri Aurobindo points out:
"The human soul's individual liberation and enjoyment of union with the Divine in spiritual being, consciousness and delight must always be the first object of the yoga; its free enjoyment of the cosmic unity of the Divine becomes a second object; but out of that a third appears, the effectuation of the meaning of the divine unity with all beings by a sympathy and participation in the spiritual purpose of the Divine in humanity. The individual Yoga then turns from its separateness and becomes a part of the collective Yoga of the divine Nature in the human race. The liberated individual being, united with the Divine in self and spirit, becomes in his natural being a self-perfecting instrument for the perfect out flowering of the Divine in humanity."6
As has been noted, each of the three methods of Jnana Yoga, Karma Yoga and Bhakti Yoga plays a major role, and it is emphasized in this new synthesis of yoga that each of these three methods is pursued with a certain largeness, can take into itself the powers of the others and lead to methods of evolution that have been at work at various stages of evolution, and which are particularly related to human evolution and to what Sri Aurobindo puts forward as the supramental evolution of the divine body by a process of triple transformation. In the development of this method, Sri Aurobindo and the Mother found it necessary to work out something that was colossally important and indispensable but which was not found in any earlier systems of the synthesis of yoga, and it is to that aspect of the work that we may turn.
Evolution of the Next Species
The divine life in the divine body, the eventual advent of
the supramental supermanhood, and the evolution of the next species, is the goal that has been envisaged for the integral yoga, and since this yoga is not only the yoga for the individual but also for the collectivity and for the advancement of the evolutionary process, its goal includes radical consequences for the collective life of humanity and even for the solution of the contemporary problems of humanity.
Integral yoga has for its aim the generalization of yoga in humanity and this aim envisages three preparatory movements. There is, first, the movement towards spiritual fulfilment of the urge to individual perfection and an inner completeness of being; secondly, there has to develop the perfection of the spiritual and pragmatic relation of the individual with all around him; and thirdly there has to be a movement towards a new world, a change in the total life of humanity. These three preparations and perfections have been briefly summarized by Sri Aurobindo in the following words:
"It is, then, this spiritual fulfilment of the urge to individual perfection and an inner completeness of being that we mean first when we speak of a divine life. It is the first essential condition of a perfected life on earth, and we are therefore right in making the utmost possible individual perfection our first supreme business. The perfection of the spiritual and pragmatic relation of the individual with all around him is our second preoccupation; the solution of this second desideratum lies in a complete universality and oneness with all life upon earth which is the other concomitant result of an evolution into the gnostic consciousness and nature. But there still remains the third desideratum, a new world, a change in the total life of
humanity or, at the least, a new perfected collective life in the earth-nature. This calls for the appearance not only of isolated evolved individuals acting in the unevolved mass, but of many gnostic individuals forming a new kind of beings and a new common life superior to the present individual and common existence."7
Six Elements of Perfection
The programme of the individual perfection and an inner completeness of being is itself a difficult programme, and the other two preparations of perfection will also need to be undertaken in varying degrees along with the first programme of perfection. In this yoga of self-perfection, as described in his ''The Synthesis of Yoga', Sri Aurobindo analyses perfection as consisting of six elements. The first consists of the perfection of equality (samata) and of the action of equality. The next element consists of raising all the active parts of the human nature to that highest condition and working pitch of that power and capacity, s'akti, at which they become capable of being divinized into the true instruments of the free, perfect, spiritual and divine action. This second element includes four things: the full powers of the instrumental nature, the perfected dynamism of the fourfold soul-nature, the ascension of the powers of the instrumental nature and of the soul-nature into the action of the divine Power, and a perfect faith in all our members to call and support that ascension, — s'akti, virya, daivi prakrti, s'raddha. The third perfection will consist of the evolution of the mental into the Gnostic being. The fourth element of perfection will consist of the accomplishment of the Gnostic perfection in the body, and this will imply the bringing in the law of the Gnostic Purusha, vijhanamaya purusa, as also of
the anadamaya purusa (bliss-purusha), into the physical consciousness and its members. The fifth element of perfection will consist of the perfect action and enjoyment of being on the Gnostic basis. Finally, the sixth element of perfection will consist of Gnostic evolution opening up into the divine principle of ananda, so that the perfected individual will experience "all the universe as the manifestation of the One, all quality and action as the play of his universal and infinite energy, all knowledge and conscious experience as the out flowing of that consciousness, and all in the terms of that one Ananda......For in this
spiritual bliss and being he will be one with That which is the origin and continent and inhabitant and spirit and constituting power of all existence. This will be the highest reach of self-perfection."8
It is not possible for man to have the strength to take a large immediate plunge straight into the integral method to pursue the integral yoga. Indeed, rare individuals may have the strength to plunge straight into the sea of the Divine Infinity. But normally, since our present nature is limited, divided, and unequal, it is easiest for us to concentrate in the strongest part of our being and fuse the methods of Jnana Yoga as a starting point or the methods of Bhakti Yoga or the methods of Karma Yoga as a starting point and follow definite lines of progress proper to our individual nature. But the path, whatever its point of commencement, must proceed in the end through a totality of integrated knowledge, emotion, will of dynamic action, perfection of the being and the entire nature. There must come about ultimately an ascent into the supramental Truth, which can bring about a descent of that Light and Truth into the entire being and all parts of our nature.
A Dilemma9 that confronts the Integral Yoga: Importance of Life-Force
There is, however, a dilemma that confronts the pursuit of the integral yoga. On the one hand, one cannot reach the supramental light as long as one continues to be burdened by the Life-Force which remains unregenerated. On the other hand, that Life-Force cannot be regenerated radically without the descent of the infallible light of the supermind. Even if one can succeed in arriving at purity of the states of knowledge and of divine love by the pursuit of Jnana Yoga and Bhakti Yoga, the demands of the Life-Force will oblige the seeker to deal with the impurities and dualities of the ego-consciousness which seem to be inextricably tied up with the works of Life-Force. It is possible in systems of exclusive yoga to renounce the works of Life-Force (i.e. works that are related to acquisition, possession, relationship, enjoyment, influence, etc.) and to be content with the works of knowledge and works of love, but the integral yoga must find a remedy to redress and transform the troubled vital nature and activities of Life-Force. These activities of Life-Force are normally centered on desire and egoism, and the effort to eliminate these two obstructing limitations and perversities and to transform the nature and motive of these activities so as to divinize them presents such obstinate difficulties that one is led to avoid them and banish them from the life of yoga. But the integral yoga cannot accept this banishment. As Sri Aurobindo points out, even though there is a saving light in Knowledge, a redeeming and transforming force in Love, these cannot be effective in earth-life unless they secure the consent of Life and can use the instrumentation of some delivered energy at its centre for a sublimation of the erring human into a divine Life-Force. As Sri Aurobindo
"The Life-Force is an indispensable intermediary, the effectuating element in Nature here; mind needs its alliance if the works of mind are not to remain shining inner formations without a body; the spirit needs it to give an outer force and form to its manifested possibilities and arrive at a complete self-expression incarnated in Matter. ...Life is indispensable to the completeness of the creative spiritual realization, but life released, transformed, uplifted, not the ordinary mentalised human-animal life, nor the demoniac or Titanic, not even the divine and the undivine mixed together. Whatever may be done by other world-shunning or heaven-seeking disciplines, this is the difficult but unavoidable task of the integral Yoga; it cannot afford to leave unsolved the problem of the outward works of life, it must find in them their native Divinity and ally it firmly and for ever to the divinities of Love and Knowledge."10
Solution of the Difficulties of the Dilemma: Three Conditions for Transformation of Life-Force
Integral yoga aims at the transformation of life in its very principle, and it underlines three conditions which are indispensable for the achievement of this central inner revolution and new formation. The first condition is to insist upon the abolition of desire and replacement of desire by a purer and firmer motive-power. The pursuit of this condition aims at the dissolution of desire and the emergence of the calm, strength and happiness of a true vital being now concealed within us. This implies not only the development of spiritual equality so that one becomes equal-soul to all things, unmoved by joy and sorrow, the pleasant and unpleasant, success or failure, but also the emergence of the
true vital being which is within us behind the veil of ignorance. According to the yogic psychology, there is a vital being, pranamaya purusa, which is a projection of the Divine Purusha into life, in its true nature, — the vital being that is tranquil, strong, luminous, many-energied, obedient to the Divine Will, egoless, yet capable of all action, achievement, highest or largest enterprise.
But there is a second condition, which also needs to be fulfilled. The pure vital being provides us the instrumentation of a divine life, but the vital being always needs a power that can govern and that can provide divine initiative. The progression of divine life demands that the mind and the life impulse must cease to be anything but instruments and the inmost psychic being must take their place as the leader on the path and the indicator of a divine guidance. It is true that the psychic being does not provide the supreme government and direction, since, as Sri Aurobindo points out, that is not its function, but it supplies during the transition from ignorance to a divine Knowledge a progressive guidance for the inner and outer life and action. The guidance of the psychic being provides a progressive solution of the dilemma of the integral yoga, and during the transitional passage the unregenerated life-force can receive from that guidance that intermediate life and power which can unburden it of its vital perversions and uplift the being towards the higher heights of divine nature. As Sri Aurobindo points out, the psychic being indicates at each moment the method, the way, the steps that will lead to that fulfilled spiritual condition in which a supreme dynamic initiative will be always there directing the activities of a divinized Life-Force. Sri Aurobindo states:
"The light it sheds illuminates the other parts of the
nature which, for want of any better guidance than their own confused and groping powers, have been wandering in the rounds of the Ignorance; it gives to mind the intrinsic feeling of the thoughts and perceptions, to life the infallible sense of the movements that are misled or misleading and those that are well-inspired; something like a quiet oracle from within discloses the causes of our stumblings, warns in time against their repetition, extracts from experience and intuition the law, not rigid but plastic, of a just direction for our acts, a right step, an accurate impulse. A will is created that becomes more in consonance with evolving Truth rather than with the circling and dilatory mazes of a seeking error. A determined orientation towards the greater Light to be, a soul-instinct, a psychic tact and insight into the true substance, motion and intention of things, coming always nearer and nearer to a spiritual vision, to a knowledge by inner contact, inner sight and even identity, begin to replace the superficial keenness of mental judgment and the eager graspings of the Life-Force. The works of Life right themselves, escape from confusion, substitute for the artificial or legal order imposed by the intellect and for the arbitrary rule of desire the guidance of the soul's inner sight, enter into the profound paths of the Spirit. Above all, the psychic being imposes on life the law of the sacrifice of all its works as an offering to the Divine and Eternal. Life becomes a call to that which is beyond Life; its every smallest act enlarges with the sense of the Infinite.""
As the second condition grows into greater and greater effectivity, the last condition also begins to be underlined. As a part of this third condition life ceases to turn towards the satisfaction of the separative ego. Eventually, ego has to disappear, and it comes to be replaced by the true spiritual
person, the central being, and life is turned towards the fulfillment of the Divine in terrestrial existence. As a result, our spirit, our self rises not only into an inner identity with some wide cosmic Self but into some contact with that which is beyond, though aware of and dominant over the action of the universe. It is then that there comes about a real and effective and total integralisation. It will then be found that it is the supra-mental power, the divine shakti that descends within us, and it is that power that effects the accomplishment of the object of the integral yoga.
The unveiling of the psychic being and the bringing of the psychic entity into the front and giving it there the lead and rule is a capital movement of the integral yoga. It might even seem that this movement would result in the fulfillment of all our natural being and would also open the gates of the kingdom of the Spirit. But, as Sri Aurobindo points out, although the psychic transformation is one necessary condition of the total transformation of our existence, it is not all that is needed for the largest transformation that is envisaged by the integral yoga. The movement of ascent to the supermind and the descent of the supermind right up to the physical consciousness are indispensable. For it is the supermind in which there is perfect unity of Truth-Knowledge and Truth-Will, and it is only by that unity that the perfect harmony in the outer and inner existence can be established. The supermind is the power of integral completeness and a power which links the higher and lower hemispheres of the One Existence. As Sri Aurobindo points out:
"In Supermind is the integrating Light, the consummating Force, the wide entry into the supreme Ananda: the psychic being uplifted by that Light and Force
can unite itself with the original Delight of existence from which it came: overcoming the dualities of pain and pleasure, delivering from all fear and shrinking the mind, life and body, it can recast the contacts of existence in the world into terms of the Divine Ananda."'2
The Meaning of "Transformation"
The word transformation has been used by Sri Aurobindo in a very special sense. As mentioned in an earlier chapter, Sri Aurobindo has explained this word in a letter as follows:
"By transformation I do not mean some change of the nature — I do not mean, for instance, sainthood or ethical perfection or yogic siddhis (like the Tantrik's) or a transcendental (cinmaya) body. I use transformation in a special sense, a change of consciousness radical and complete and of a certain specific kind which is so conceived as to bring about a strong and assured step forward in the spiritual evolution of the being of a greater and higher kind and of a larger sweep and completeness than what took place when a mentalised being first appeared in a vital and material animal world. If anything short of that takes place or at least if a real beginning is not made on that basis, a fundamental progress towards this fulfillment, then my object is not accomplished. A partial realization, something mixed and inconclusive, does not meet the demand I make on life and yoga. ...
"Realization by itself does not necessarily transform the being as a whole; ... One may have some light of realisation at the spiritual summit of the consciousness but the parts below remain what they were. I have seen any number of instances of that. There must be a descent of the light not merely into the mind or part of it but into all the being down
to the physical and below before a real transformation can take place. A light in the mind may spiritualise or otherwise change the mind or part of it in one way or another, but it need not change the vital nature; a light in the vital may purify and enlarge the vital movements or else silence and immobilize the vital being, but leave the body and the physical consciousness as it was, or even leave it inert or shake its balance. And the descent of Light is not enough; it must be the descent of the whole higher consciousness, its Peace, Power, Knowledge, Love, Ananda. Moreover, the descent may be enough to liberate, but not to perfect, or it may be enough to make a great change in the inner being, while the outer remains an imperfect instrument, clumsy, sick or unexpressive. Finally, transformation effected by the sadhana cannot be complete unless it is a supramentalisation of the being. Psychicisation is not enough, it is only a beginning; spiritualization and the descent of the higher consciousness in not enough, it is only a middle term; the ultimate achievement needs the action of the supramental Consciousness and Force. Something less than that may very well be considered enough by the individual, but it is not enough for the earth-consciousness to take the definitive stride forward it must take at one time or another...
"I know very well also that there have been seemingly allied ideals and anticipations — the perfectibility of the race, certain Tantric sadhanas, the effort after a complete physical siddhi by certain schools of yoga, etc., etc. I have alluded to these things myself and have put forth the view that the spiritual past of the race has been a preparation of Nature not merely for attaining the Divine beyond the world, but also for this very step forward which the evolution of the earth-consciousness has still to make. ... I laid emphasis on it as
new in a letter to certain sadhaks so as to explain to them that a repetition of the aim and idea of the old yogas was not enough in my eyes, that I was putting forward a thing to be achieved that has not yet been achieved, not yet clearly visualized, even though it is the natural but still secret outcome of all the past spiritual endeavour. ...'"3
The aim of total transformation that this new synthesis of this yoga puts forward is a process that involves, first, psychic transformation, secondly, spiritual transformation, and thirdly, supramental transformation. This entire process is based on the discovery of the psychic being, of the spiritual being in its multisidedness and integrality, and of the supramental consciousness and power in its plenitude. The discoveries made by Sri Aurobindo and the Mother in regard to these three realms of psychic consciousness, spiritual consciousness and supramental consciousness confirmed in many ways what was already discovered and applied in the past traditions of religion, occultism, philosophy and yoga, both specialized and synthetic. But what distinguishes the discoveries of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother is not only the fullness of these discoveries and the evolutionary methods by which the principles and processes of these three domains are explored, developed to their fullness and integrated, but also the discoveries of those secrets which were never explored in the earlier systems of knowledge, including some which were never suspected or envisaged. An entirely new path had to be hewn for effecting ascent to the supermind and for the descent of the supermind right up to the earth-consciousness and even up to the Inconscience. The totality of the application of the methods of evolution and thoroughness with which these methods came to be applied right up to their minutest details for arriving at perfect
perfection and integration of Spirit and Matter through the transformation of the inconscience by the supramental consciousness is entirely new and unprecedented. The result of this vast and difficult endeavour is the effect it has produced in the evolutionary process itself and in breaking the limitations of the evolutionary boundaries of mental consciousness and in establishing and fixing the supramental consciousness as a new grade of evolution in the physical earth. Evolution itself has evolved; what has been accomplished is the penetration and breaking the hardest rock bottom of the most rigid, narrow and stifling layer of the inconscience; the secret of permeating the cellular consciousness in the human body has come to be discovered and applied, and thus a way has been created for the mutation and evolution of a new supramental species which, it is envisaged, will create on the earth the conditions of the highest fulfillment of the highest aspirations of humanity.