03. March 1962 – Aphorism 76
76 — Europe prides herself on her practical and scientific organisation and efficiency. I am waiting till her organisation is perfect; then a child shall destroy her.
It's terribly embarrassing.
Let's pass it over in silence.
I would be curious to know what Sri Aurobindo meant by it.
I did know, but I hastened to forget it I knew it when he was still in his body.
Once or twice it came back and each time I sort of (gesture) locked it away in a cupboard.
It's better left unsaid.
I once knew what he meant— right now I don't remember.
(See 11. December 1971)
06. March 1962 – Total experience of identification
This in itself has to be conquered; I mean, the state in itself represents something to be conquered. Because... you remember, I told you the other day about having such a tremendous experience in the body-consciousness – this... this dull consciousness in the material world, which really gives the feeling of something inert, unchanging, incapable of responding; you could wait millions and millions of years and nothing would budge. And that experience came at the end of a rather critical passage – it takes catastrophes to get it moving, that's what's so strange! And not only that, but the wisp of imagination it does have (if you can call it imagination) is invariably catastrophic. Whatever it anticipates is always for the worst – the pettiest, meanest, nastiest kind of worst – always the worst. It's... really, it's the most sickening condition human consciousness and matter can be in. Well, I have been swimming in it for months, and my way of being in it is to go through every possible illness and to have every possible physical aggravation, one after another.
Just recently, as I told you, things truly became a little... disgusting, dangerous, and for an hour or an hour and a half I did a sadhana like this (Mother clenches her fists), keeping hold of this body and body-consciousness. And the whole time the Force was at work there (it was like kneading a very resistant dough), something was saying to me, "Look, you can't deny miracles any longer." It was being said to this consciousness (not to me, of course), this body-consciousness: " Now you can't deny it miracles do happen." It was forced to see; there it was, gaping like an idiot being shown the sky – "Ah!" And it's so stupid that it didn't even have any joy of discovery! But it was forced to see, the thing was right under its nose – there was no escaping it, it had to be admitted. But you know what, mon petit, as soon as I let up on the pressure – forgotten!
I remember the whole experience, of course, but the body-consciousness forgot. The slightest difficulty, even the shadow or the recollection of a difficulty, was enough for it to start up all over again: "Oh... oh! Now what's going to happen?" The same old anxieties and stupidities.
So I realize that we have to keep on trying.
What's annoying, though, is that in order to shake it all up, I have to go through some pretty bad moments physically. So don't worry, I understand how it is for others! I myself never lose either consciousness or contact with... not with Knowledge, but with the total EXPERIENCE of identification. Only here in Matter does the work have this particular nature. So l understand how it is for people who live heedlessly from day to day, from minute to minute, for whom it's not a constant, permanent work of each second, totally conscious and deliberate.... And besides, this body is so willing – the poor thing, sometimes I have found it crying like a child, imploring, "How do you get out of this mess?" That's exactly why all the people who have achieved the inner realization have called this work "impossible." It's their own impossibility! I know it's not impossible, I know it will come, but... how long will it take? That I don't know.
My feeling is that if you try to hurry, to rush, to speed things up a little, it jams, it becomes like stone – it turns to stone again. It took the stone a long time to become a man.... So I don't want that. You can't get too impatient – it's not even impatience, but pressure. Beyond a certain pressure, it turns to stone. So I understand people who attain realization and, blissfully enjoying it, kick the whole thing out: "Fine, I'll do without it!"
That's what has always happened.
But I can't do that.
What I always do is say, "Well, all right..." (I say this to the Lord with a smile), "if You have now decided I should leave, I'll go willingly."
If He ever gave me a slap, that's when I'd get one! I can feel it even while I am saying this.
It's simply to ensure that the consciousness is in a state of perfect equanimity; I mean, whether things turn out like this or like that leaves me completely indifferent: what You will – spontaneously and integrally and exclusively – My Will. I say "My" Will on purpose, to show total adhesion. It's not submission, it has nothing to do with submission; it's like this (gesture of total abandonment). Well, in spite of that, there's not much progress.
Although sometimes, yes, all of a sudden.... Take this example (it may seem a mere trifle, but when you have reached this point...): the first sudden glimmer of conscious control over a bodily functioning, giving you a glimpse of the time when everything will function through the action of a conscious will. That has begun – but it's a tiny, tiny, tiny beginning. And the slightest mental intrusion from the old movement spoils it all – I mean the old way of behaving with your body: you want this and you want that and you want to make it do this and you want to make it.... The minute that pops up, everything stops. Progress comes to a standstill. One must be in a state of beatific union... then one can feel the new functioning begin.
But it has become such a delicate play! A MINUTE thing, minute, can throw everything out of gear – one simple ordinary movement. If through habit you slip back into the ordinary functioning (these are infinitesimal things, not easily seen, subtle, tenuous; one must be very, very, VERY alert), if this happens, the whole new thing stops. Then you have to wait. Wait until the ordinary functioning consents to stop, and that means meditating, entering into contemplation – going over the whole path again. Then, when you have caught hold of That again and can stay there for a few seconds, sometimes a few minutes (it's marvelous when it lasts a few minutes).... And then it gets jammed again and everything has to be done over.
I am not saying this to discourage you, but to tell you that one must really and truly be patient. The only possible way to do it is in a sort of passivity: not to WANT the result – WANTING the result brings in an ego movement which spoils it all.
I have been telling you for a long time that we are VERY close – for a long time.
So when people ask me, I say (to tell them something), "We shall see." It's certainly not that I don't know; I know perfectly well how it will be. But (laughing) I don't know when! That, I don't know. Even at this point, I don't know when.
In fact, if something wants to know when, then it's still in a hurry.
I used to say the same thing. When Sri Aurobindo was here I used to tell everybody, "I am not a saint and don't want to be a saint!" And look what has happened to me!
You have to be an unsaintly saint.
Without an ounce of saintliness.
You know, all those little rules we're enjoined to follow: "Above all, don't do that; and be sure to do this, don't forget that...." Like ablutions, for instance, or attitudes, or what to eat – there's no dearth of them. A mountain of do's and don'ts – all completely swept away! And swept away to the point where sometimes a rule, something highly recommended ("Be sure to do this, be careful to do that" – an attitude or an action) becomes an obstacle. I hardly dare say it, but one example is having a regular schedule – always making ablutions at the same hour, always doing japa in the same manner and so on. And I am perfectly aware that Sri Aurobindo himself puts all sorts of trivial obstacles in my way – obstacles I could hurdle with a single second of reflection; he sets them up as if in play. Do you remember the aphorism where he says he was quarreling with the Lord and the Lord made him fall in the mud?
(Aphorism 463 – At first whenever I fell back into sin, I used to weep and rage against myself and against God for having suffered it. Afterwards it was as much as I could dare to ask, "Why hast thou rolled me again in the mud, O my playfellow?"...)
That's just what I feel. He puts a stick in my spokes and laughs. So I say, "All right, that's enough, I don't give a hoot! I'll do whatever You want, it's not my problem; I can do it or not do it, do it this way or that...." It has all gone up in smoke now.
What has become constant, though.... I shouldn't say it, because it's going to get me into trouble again! But anyway, what's trying to be constant is DISCRIMINATION: taking all circumstances, vibrations, relationships, what comes from the people around me, what responds, and putting each in its proper place. A second-to-second discrimination. I know where things are coming from, why they come, their effect, where they're going to lead me, and so on. It's growing more and more frequent, constant, automatic – like a state of being.
That's about the only place where progress is really visible. I hope the fact of having spoken won't get me into trouble again!
But impatience and irritation.... Well, if it makes you feel better.... Some people need it as a safety valve – but it makes you lose a lot of time.
One day I was all tensed up; things had become so "intolerable," as people say, that something in the most material vital went into what's usually considered a fit of rage (it was totally under control – I mean it was working as a safety valve and being observed as such in all its vibrations). I was alone in the bathroom, nobody to see me; I grabbed hold of I don't remember what and smashed it on the floor!
Aah, what a relief!
I'll tell you what I do: I say to the Lord, "All right, if that's how it is, well, I am not doing anything any more; I am resting in Your arms and waiting." I actually, concretely (I was about to say "materially") do it – and then I don't stir. "You will do it all, I am not doing anything." And I really stay like that. Immediately, of course, there's a great joy and I don't stir.
For instance, I am completely snowed under with material work, letters, people, matters to arrange and decide, big things to organize, all of it falling on me from every side and trying to take up all my time and energy. At times it really gets too much. So when it's too much, I say, "All right, Lord, now I will nestle in Your arms." And there I am, no longer thinking, no longer bothering about anything, and... I go into Bliss. Usually after ten minutes everything is fine!
You can lie down on a mat, look at a flower or a patch of sky if there's any to see; if need be (teasingly), smoke a cigarette to keep yourself busy, and just stay like that, relaxed. And if you do your pranayama along with this "relaxation" you will notice yourself growing extremely strong – storing, storing, storing up energies. And then if you have to make an effort, there's nothing to it – it's as easy as pie.
It's that old habit, the old fear of being lazy. It took me.... But Sri Aurobindo cured me of that rather quickly. That's how it was before I met him. And that's the first thing he did: he gave me a tap on the head, and all activity ceased – total silence, all mental constructions and habits swept away... in the blink of an eye.
I was very careful not to let it come back.
Then, afterwards, well....
He mentions it when he explains mental equality (Synthesis of Yoga) – that a state is reached where one is unable to initiate any activity; only the stimulus of an impulsion from above can move you. So you do nothing, you just stay like that, perfectly immobile in your mind (not only physically – especially in your mind): you don't initiate anything.
Before, the mind was always creating, setting actions, wills and movements into motion, producing consequences; and it's very frightening when that stops – you feel you're becoming an idiot. But it's quite the opposite! No more ideas, no more will, no more impulsions, nothing. You act only when something makes you act, without knowing why or how.
This "something" doesn't come from below, of course, it mustn't come from below. But that condition can truly be achieved only when all the work below has been completed.
11. March 1962 – The Beings of the Vital World
(Mother listens to Satprem read the July 11, 1956 Talk on the vital world. She refuses to have it published in the "Bulletin".)
To begin with, I said that the vital is peopled by small entities, small formations, the remnants of human beings who have died. But there is a whole vital world which has nothing to do with that one, a world peopled by beings of the vital proper, beings of great power and even great beauty. Most people who dabble in occultism without having a deep enough spiritual life are immediately deluded by them – some even take them as the supreme God and worship them. That's generally how religions are created. They are a great success. They are the supreme God of many a religion – they are beings of the vital world, and can assume an appearance of overwhelming beauty. They are the biggest impostors in the world, and dangerous at that; it takes the spiritual instinct, the instinct of true spiritual purity, not to be deceived by them.
Many religions and sects are founded on revelations and miracles, and every bit of it comes from vital beings.
It's one of the greatest problems in human life; I don't mean spiritual life, but the life of people who deal with the beyond.
There are skies (not heavens) in the vital world that are truly paradises. Naturally the real divine element is lacking, but only spiritual purity and the true spiritual sense can show you the difference. All who remain within the vital or mental worlds are completely deluded. They see marvelous things, miracles in profusion (that's where you find the most miracles!).
By neglecting to explain this aspect [in this Talk], I passed over a large part of the topic in silence. I usually don't speak of those things, or else mention them only in passing – it terrifies people and they immediately start wondering, "Oh, is it really a god? Is it this... is it that? Could it be a devil in disguise?" They panic.
Only it's perfectly true that to deal with those realms one must either be fully protected by a guru, a real guru, a man with knowledge, or else have purity (not saintliness), an unmixed vital and mental purity. Very, very often, bhaktas [devotees] of Sri Aurobindo or me – when they are sincere, truly sincere, that is, people of great spiritual purity – have dozens of beings appear to them, saying, "I am Sri Aurobindo." It happens all the time, with all the right external appearances – it's very easy for such beings to put on a disguise. It takes the inner psychic purity not to be deceived – you invariably FEEL something that makes it impossible for you to be duped. But otherwise, many, many people are taken in.
I don't like to talk about this because people here have no discrimination; they would be left with nothing but fear and would no longer believe in anything, forever asking me, "Oh, isn't this a trick?"... Which paralyzes everything. That's why I didn't speak about that in this Talk.
You do say a couple of words about it.
It should at least be mentioned that some beings in the vital world can take on completely deceptive appearances at will – all the most dazzling lights are found in the vital, but with a particular quality. So those who have truly approached THE Light can't be deceived. Because... it's indefinable, something the spiritual sense alone can feel: perfect security, perfect peace, perfect purity (although I hesitate to use the word "purity," which has taken on such an idiotic meaning); what I mean is the absence of all admixture.
To those with the spiritual sense, the most dazzling vital lights always seem to have something artificial about them – they FEEL artificial and cold, hard, aggressive, deceptive. But that's the point: you yourself must be beyond all this. Not to be fooled, you mustn't fool yourself!
Actually, that's the main reason I don't like to talk about occultism. It puts people in touch with an extremely dangerous world which can't be safely entered unless one is (I can't even say a saint, because it's not true; some saints enter the vital world and get right into it!)... unless one is transformed, unless one has the true spiritual consciousness. On this condition alone are you perfectly safe. So where are the people with the spiritual consciousness? There are really very few of them, very few. And above all, in those who have this occult curiosity there are also all sorts of vital movements, which make it dangerous for them to enter that world. Unless, of course, they go shielded by the guru's presence; with that, you can go anywhere, it's the same as going there with him. And if you do go with him, all is well; he has the knowledge and he protects you. But going there all on your own is... you need the Divine Protection itself! Or the protection of the guru who represents the Divine. With the guru's protection you are safe.
But isn't it possible to have a fruitful collaboration with those beings? Should they be avoided altogether, or what?
Collaboration? Not with them as they are, and not in the world as it is – no.
I have told you about my dealings with the Lord of Nations on several occasions – it's that kind of thing. It can hardly be called collaboration!
The great ones know (I am not speaking of the multitude of minor beings, but the others; there are millions of emanations – emanations by the truckload! – but only a few great ones), they know enough to be aware of their own position in the universe and that they will come to an end. They know there is such a thing as the Supreme (although they deny it), and that they are cut off from the Supreme, and that they will come to an end. But they have taken a stand against the Work, the Action, the Progress, and are intent on destroying as much as they can.
Some of them get converted. Their conversion means a great entity joining the divine Work – but that seldom happens.
Yes, but what about the minor gods? You often speak of a "little Kali" or a "little Durga"; are these beings beneficent?
Ah, they aren't from the vital at all! Not at all! They are manifestations of Overmind beings, projected into the vital world for a specific action. But they aren't vital beings: they have an Origin, they are still linked to a being from another world. Oh, no, not at all!
The same goes for all those beings the Tantrics deal with – their origin is not vital, they belong to Nature. They are personified natural forces obedient to the laws of Nature. In other words, they originate from below, not from the vital but the physical world. They are vital forces in the physical, but not of vital origin.
The other day, didn't I tell you the story of those entities working for me?... (It wasn't you? I'd had a vision.) In fact, I very often see entities like Nature spirits when I enter the subtle physical and work there (usually for people here and the Ashram, and for the world at large), I very, very often have them with me, or else I meet them in the course of my work. They are forces, generally feminine in appearance, that do some work and have a great deal of power. They are usually the ones that respond to Tantric invocations (I don't mean the Tantrics who call on Kali or Durga, that's something else altogether, those belong to a totally different world). Most of the time these Nature forces are very willing to help – at any rate, they are wonderfully obliging with me! But they are limited beings, with their own ideas and laws, their own volition, and when vexed they can do unpleasant things. Yet they are not hostile beings, nor are they vital beings: they are personified forces of physical Nature, in the subtle physical.
A world of things could be said....
No, I don't know if it's wise to publish this Talk; if too incomplete, it looks like ignorant chatter. And I have always deliberately refused to say things in full since it's so very disconcerting for people, very disconcerting.
But couldn't what you just said be added to the Talk?
I can tell you the result: a lot of people will lose all confidence in what they see. Then it becomes impossible to work with them. I can't even teach them to receive what I tell them in silence any more; they instantly start wondering, "Oh, is it Mother or a spirit of falsehood?" They really have no sense of discrimination, you see, they don't KNOW! So if they have to come every time, wondering "Was it you or was it...?" And when they're in that state they don't listen properly. There's a whole range of work I can't do any more, because they lack the necessary discrimination. So I normally don't say anything.
I really prefer to say nothing.
In fact, practically speaking, that's why these things used to be kept secret: one should get knowledge ONLY when it's accompanied by discrimination enabling one to distinguish the origin of what is seen or received. One without the other makes for a dangerous weapon.
Some people have even been driven insane, through their own constant fear – out of fear they refused all protection. I tell you, only those with a great devotion and a great love are not deceived – a great devotion gives you an immediate sense of things; when your devotion goes like this (shrinking gesture), you know what it means. But your devotion must be sincere and very strong; it's the only protection.
Written things can fall into all sorts of hands and become very dangerous weapons.
No, I prefer not to put these things in the Bulletin; I would rather not speak of occult matters. I understand more and more, now that I am grappling with material difficulties that used to be nonexistent (in the material world, I mean), they didn't exist for me before. The material domain was something happening far below and I didn't bother with it at all. Even when I was practicing occultism in the most material world, I looked on it from above; there was this sort of inner light, this Presence – I was born with it, so naturally I had no problems. But now that I am in the thick of this work, I don't want to speak of that, it's too dangerous.
That teaching should really be given under the seal of secrecy, and given along with the necessary power and discrimination for going through the experiences without danger. And that means the guru's constant personal care and attention.
Certain stages of your development even require the guru's physical presence: you must no longer go into trance unless he is there, sitting beside you. Out of the question! Can't you just imagine me saddled with loads of people!... It's impossible; I couldn't even do the job properly. No, it's impossible, it would simply mean exposing a lot of people to permanent danger – and I don't want to. So we'll put this Talk aside.
But even without what you've said now....
Then it becomes inanities – it's too incomplete. I'd rather not attract people's attention to these topics too much. There must be other things to publish. Since you can't give the full picture, it becomes sheer inanity. If you wanted to be perfectly complete, you could write volumes (it's a tremendous world of experiences!). And saying just a thing or two makes you look like one of those ninnies who have a few experiences and think they've discovered the world!
13. March 1962 – About publishing the Agenda
And that's all I said. Maybe I didn't put it in exactly those words, but I said it was for those who love me. That's the point. For those who have loved me, well, it's all right, I give it to them; even if they forget me, it will make them remember. But it's my gift to those who continue to love me. And I don't intend to give them a worthless gift.
No, no, I must really have expressed myself very poorly, because it was quite the opposite. I deem this Agenda far too intimate, far too near and dear to me, to be thrown as fodder to a bunch of idiots!
I said two things. One, if I make it through to the end, I may even let it be shown to the public, for the living proof will be there: "You don't need to scoff – just see where it leads – HERE!" And if the Lord decides it's not for this time, well, then I will give it to those who have loved me, who have lived with me, worked with me, endeavored with me, and who respect what was attempted. It will be my parting gift... if I go. And I don't intend to.
Because it comes from very high – it's not from here, not at all; it was decided on high, and a long, LONG time ago. Before you came here, I was constantly feeling.... Besides, it hadn't been so long without Sri Aurobindo; when Sri Aurobindo was here I had nothing to say, and if I did speak it was almost by chance. That's all. What had to be said was said by him. And when he left and I began to read his books (which I hadn't read before), I told myself, "Well, what do you know! There was absolutely no need for me to say anything." And I had less and less desire to speak. The minute I met you, I began to get interested. "Ah," I thought, "collaboration!... Something interesting can be done."
None of this is random chance. It's not that we're taking advantage of circumstances, not at all; it was DECREED.
All my life I have always, always felt I had something to say, but that there had to be another instrument to say it, to give it a kind of perfection of form I myself was unable to give. Because that's not my job. It's not my job.
What I can bring to the world are flashes – something that goes beyond, above and through everything that is presently manifested. But I don't have the patience for the concrete, fixed, material form. I could have been a scholar, I could have been a writer, just as I could have been a painter – and I have never had the patience for any of it. There was always "something" moving on too swiftly, too high and too far.
So I greatly appreciate beautiful written form. I love it. There were periods in my life when I read ever so much – I am quite a library! But it's not my job.