Einstein was no conventional theist. John Brooke, Emeritus Professor of Science and Religion at Oxford University, says: “Like many great scientists of the past, he (Einstein) is rather quirky about religion and not always consistent from one period to another.” ...
What then is God to Einstein? The “superior reasoning power”. Aurobindo calls it “super consciousness.” I must confess I am satisfied with this definition. It is the closest that any Western thinker has come to the Hindu idea of Advaita. Here is convergence of East and West. Have I ever felt the need to give this “superior reasoning power” a human shape? No. Never. I am more comfortable with a logical power, not one whimsical or arbitrary. Or, one who can be bought.
Aurobindo did not associate spirituality with the next world. His “kingdom of God” is here on earth. And, above all, the evolution of a new divine race is to take place here on earth. (The Human Cycle)
The central theme of the “Human Cycle” is the progressive divination of the human race. To Aurobindo, the end and beginning of all development is the spirit. Evolution began with the spirit and ends with its unfolding.
“All development is the unfolding of the spirit,” he says. And as it unfolds, the consciousness expands. Man’s future evolution has thus to come from the growth of his consciousness. And “the emergence of a high consciousness has to come from the freedom of consciousness”, he says. “If the spirit,” he warns “is stuck to some fixed mental idea or system of religious cult, then the emergence of a higher consciousness is not possible.”
Which is why all religions based on books—Judaism, Christianity and Islam—are stuck to their books. They cannot go beyond them. It is Aurobindo’s fundamental postulate that only that which is involved can evolve. He says: “If it be true that the Absolute is involved in matter, then that Absolute must ultimately manifest itself through evolution as consciousness.” (The Life Divine).
It is this “consciousness”, this “intelligence”, this “superior reasoning power” that Krishna talks about in the Gita. He says: “At the end of the night of time, Call things return to my nature...” But when the new day of time begins, Krishna says, “I bring them into light.” This process rolls around in the circle of time. Time is cyclic to the Hindu. It is linear to the West. But on this later.
"How will belief evolve next? Maybe these believing atheists are showing us the way, along with Einstein, beyond a personal God on to the shores of eternity. Einstein had his sights set on a secular spirituality that, he said, was most closely approximated by Buddhism. He believed that the universe contained a deepest layer of reality that couldn't be rationally comprehended but only witnessed with awe and wonder. He famously said that great discoveries in science need this sense of wonder before the infinite. To me, that implies a shift in consciousness. The rational mind cannot go beyond words and concepts, but consciousness can expand within itself without limits. Whether accidentally or by intent, I hope at least a handful of believing atheists have set out on the journey that begins with the will to believe and ends beyond images, even beyond thought itself." [read more]
Makes sense to me.