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Read more about Cells from the works of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo.

What are Cells?

The Cells are the fundamental units of life as well as forms the substance of the physical consciousness. The Cells represent the first activity of life within matter in the process of evolution. The nucleus of the cells upholds the entire plan of the organism in its chromosomes. This architecture in chromosomes can be visualized as an ideal human society where each individual is conscious of the whole as well as its own personal role within the community.

“The cells have an inner composition or structure which corresponds to the structure of the universe. So the link is established between identical external and internal states. It is not "external", but it is external for the individual. That is, the cell, in its internal composition, receives the vibration of the corresponding state in the composition of the whole. Each cell is composed of different radiances, with a wholly luminous centre, and the connection is established between light and light. That is, the will, the central light, acts on the cell by touching the corresponding lights, by an inner contact of the being. Each cell is a world in miniature corresponding to the whole.”

What is Physical Consciousness?

The physical consciousness is composed of various parts namely the physical mind (the part of mind involved in matter), the physical vital (the part of vital being involved in matter), and the pure material consciousness (cellular consciousness). The concentric system at the level of physical consciousness consists of the outer physical, inner physical and psychic being while the subconscient plane, from which the physical consciousness has emerged, has strong hold on the physical. Henceforth, the Cellular consciousness is influenced from by the vital, the mind, the higher planes, the inner physical, the psychic being, and the subconscious plane.

Difficulties in Making the Cells Conscious

The difficulties in cellular consciousness is that its processes are not conscious but habitual and automatic. It is open to the collective suggestions which oppose the transformation. As it has emerged out of inconscience, it carries itself the unconscious parts and the ignorance. The other characteristics of this consciousness is inertia, obstinacy, obscurity and mechanical clinging.

Physical Mind

The physical mind is the mental substance within the matter. The physical mind is the mind of the physical personality formed by the body. It grows with the body, but it isn’t the mind of Matter: it is the mind of the physical being. The most unconscious part of physical mind that connects the physical mind with the cells is called Cellular mind (the mind of matter). This physical mind exists even in animals as well as in small children. “It (the cellular mind) is the mind that was like an uncoordinated substance, with a constant, unorganized activity (Mother gestures to show a constant tremor). This is the mind which is being organized (in the transformation of body).”

Tapping Into the Qualities of the Cell

However, the cells provide structure and permanence to the realizations of mind, vital and higher planes while also possess the divine qualities like aspiration, faith, consecration, certitude, sincerity, passive receptivity, goodwill. “this body is full of good will; it is filled with the psychic in every one of its cells. It's like a child. The other day, it cried out quite spontaneously, 'O my Sweet Lord, give me the time to realize You!' It did not ask to hasten the process, it did not ask to lighten its work; it only asked for enough TIME to do the work. 'Give me the time ” The cells are seized by the bad vibrations of the collectivity and good vibrations coming from higher and deeper realms. The cells become battle ground for these forces creating disharmony. The Mother said, “…there is no bad will in Matter, everything is inertia and ignorance: total ignorance of the Truth, ignorance of the Origin, ignorance of the Possibility…” The inertia and ignorance create disorganization and disorder. The disturbances from the vital and mental planes percolate to the physical consciousness and irritate the cells and organs. Another entity which is the origin of many disorders is the fear. The physical fear is the most difficult thing to conquer. The illness or disorders that are cured reside in subconscious part of the being and spring up from time to time causing the persistence or reemergence of diseases. Death is the phenomenon of decentralisation and dispersion of the cells which make up the physical body. The central will of the physical being abdicates its will to hold all the cells together. That is the first phenomenon. It accepts dissolution for one reason or another.

How to Transform the Cells?

The new consciousness (Supermind) can annihilate the difficulties of the matter and transform the cells after the psychic and spiritual transformation. For the transformation to happen, the physical consciousness has to be prepared through conscious exercise, right amount and right kind of food, Japa or Mantra chanting which has direct impact on the cells and offering to Divine. The mind has to made silent and an instrument of higher force and the vital movements has to calm down, then only the cells can receive the higher forces or the psychic influence. The cellular mind is the mind of ignorance which cling to old habits and keeps on repeating it. The best way to quieten it to do Japa or chant mantra. The Mother said, “That is precisely what the transformation of the body is: the physical cells not only become conscious, but receptive to the true Consciousness-Force; that is, they allow the working of this higher Consciousness. That is the work of transformation.”

“Of course a certain preliminary transformation is necessary, just as the psychic and spiritual transformation precedes the supramental. But this is a change of the physical consciousness down to the submerged consciousness of the cells so that they may respond to higher forces and admit them and to a certain extent a change or at least a greater plasticity in the processes. The rules of food etc. are meant to help that by minimising obstacles. How far this involves a change of the chemical constitution of the body I cannot say. It seems to me still that whatever preparatory changes there may be, it is only the action of the supramental Force that can confirm and complete them.” “This transformation by the help of the mind―by self-analysis―is a first step; afterwards, it is necessary to transform the vital impulses: that is much more difficult, and especially to transform the physical. Every cell in our bodies must become conscious. This is the work I am doing here; it will enable the conquest of death. That is another story; that will be the humanity of the future, perhaps after hundreds of years, perhaps sooner. It will depend on men, on nations.”

“…One must first transform his thought, all his mind, all his mental activity, organise it with higher knowledge; and at the same time one must transform his character, all the movements of the vital, all impulses, all reactions. And finally, when these two things are done, in any case up to a certain point, one can begin to think of transforming the cells of his body, but not begin at the end; one must begin at the beginning.”

Read more about Cells from the works of the Mother and Sri Aurobindo.