Since all is created from Ananda, contained and held by Ananda (I don’t know if ‘created’ is the right word), from where have pain and misery, grief and sorrow, depression and darkness come?
Through Ignorance, Division and separative Ego.
Is every plane or everything below the Supermind influenced more or less by the Ignorance? I gather that the planes from the Higher Mind to the Overmind are also of the spiritual consciousness.
The planes below are of the spiritual consciousness, but when there is a dynamic action from them, it is always a mixed action, not an action of pure knowledge but of knowledge subduing itself to the rule of the Ignorance, the cosmic necessity in a world of Ignorance. If their action was that of the full Knowledge, there would be no need of any supramental descent.
What exactly is the difference between the Supermind and the Overmind?
The Supermind is the total Truth Consciousness; the Overmind draws down the truths separately and gives them a separate activity — e.g. in the Supermind the Divine Peace and Power, Knowledge and Will are one. In the Overmind each of these becomes a separate aspect which can exist or act on its own lines apart from the others. When it comes down to Mind they turn into an ignorance and incapacity — because Knowledge can come without a will to support it or Peace can be disturbed by the action of Power etc.
You have written: “If the soul having reached the spiritual state wills to pass out of the terrestrial manifestation, it may indeed do so — but there is also possible a higher manifestation in the Knowledge and not in the Ignorance.” I don’t understand how the soul can be in Ignorance after it has reached the spiritual state. Is not the spiritual consciousness and all beyond it All Knowledge?
It is only the supramental that is All Knowledge. All below that from Overmind to Matter is Ignorance — an Ignorance growing at each level nearer to the full Knowledge. Below Supermind there may be Knowledge but it is not All Knowledge.
The Overmind is part of the mental plane.
Is not the Overmind a centre of all dynamic movements?
It is not a centre at all — it is a plane far above the mind — above and organising the terrestrial existence but from a distance above it.
You say that Overmind is not a centre but a plane; then it must be full of beings working under a certain law of that world.
Do the beings, then, of the Overmind plane work directly on the terrestrial beings or do they work, as your reply seems to suggest, indirectly — ‘from a distance’. Do they themselves not take any direct part in the earth-life? or work through some human agents?
The Beings native to the Overmind are Gods. They work through the mind and life and body, but if they do it directly, then they do it from the lower planes, not from the Overmind — until at least the human being becomes conscious of the Overmind.
You said about the Beings of the Overmind: “If they do it directly, then they do it from the lower planes.” Does it not mean that they come down upon the earth as incarnations?
No — they put out Powers from themselves in the lower planes and so act.
Are the gods of the vital world eternal, as are those of the Overmind?
They are mostly Emanations from the Overmind Gods.
Do the natives of the Overmind put powers from themselves in the cosmic consciousness in a general working?
The natives of the Overmind are Gods. Naturally the Gods rule the cosmos.
In the direct working of the Overmind Gods, when they want to put out some power upon the terrestrial existence, do they take birth upon this earth or do they work through some human agency?
Through some human agency. They can take birth if they like.
Have not some of the intermediary agents or the formateurs of Overmind shaped things mischievous and evil out of the Power that has gone out from the Divine?
The Formateurs of the Overmind have shaped nothing evil — it is the lower forces that receive from the Overmind and distort its forms.
Can the intuitive mind or the higher mind be influenced by hostile forces?
No — but the hostile forces can use the forces sent down from them if they get mixed with the mind or the vital.
What is the distinction between the knowledge of the Higher Mind and that of the Illumined mind?
The substance of knowledge is the same, but the higher mind gives only the substance and form of knowledge in thought and word — in the illumined mind there begins to be a peculiar light and energy and ananda of knowledge which grows as one rises higher in the scale or else as the knowledge comes from a higher and higher source. This light etc. are still rather diluted and diffused in the illumined mind; they become more and more intense, clearly defined and dynamic and effective on the higher planes so much so as to change always the character and power of the knowledge.