June 28, 2017 – Being Luminously Open

June 28th, 2017

Earth felt the Imperishable’s passage close:
The waking ear of Nature heard her steps
And wideness turned to her its limitless eye,
And, scattered on sealed depths, her luminous smile
Kindled to fire the silence of the worlds.

Sri Aurobindo, Savitri, Book I, Canto I, page 4

Being Luminously Open

Sweet Mother, here it is written: “The vulgar conception of sacrifice is an act of painful self-immolation, austere self-mortification, difficult self-effacement…. But the Gita discourages any excess of violence done to oneself; for the self within is really the Godhead evolving, it is Krishna, it is the Divine; it is not to be troubled and tortured as the Titans of the world trouble and torture it, but to be increasingly fostered, cherished, luminously opened to a divine Light.”

The Synthesis of Yoga, p. 100

How can one be luminously open?

If you like you may replace the word “luminously” by the word “sincerely”, or “transparently”, like something which is not opaque or does not distort; something clear, transparent, sincere, which does not obstruct.

You may take the image of a window open to the light. If your panes are of blackened or opaque glass, what comes through naturally becomes dark and opaque, and little passes through. And if the glass is quite transparent, then it is a luminous light which comes. Or if your glass is coloured, the light will be coloured in one way or another when it reaches you. While if the glass is absolutely pure and transparent, the light will come through pure and transparent.

The Mother

The Mother, Questions and Answers – 1956 – pages 82-83

All extracts and quotations from the written works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are copyright Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry -605002 India

May 17, 2017 – Inner Cleanliness

May 17th, 2017

On passed she in her spirit’s upward route.
An ardent grandeur climbed mid ferns and rocks,
A quiet wind flattered the heart to warmth,
A finer perfume breathed from slender trees.
All beautiful grew, subtle and high and strange.
Here on a boulder carved like a huge throne
A Woman sat in gold and purple sheen,
Armed with the trident and the thunderbolt,
Her feet upon a couchant lion’s back.
A formidable smile curved round her lips,
Heaven-fire laughed in the corners of her eyes;
Her body a mass of courage and heavenly strength,
She menaced the triumph of the nether gods.
A halo of lightnings flamed around her head
And sovereignty, a great cestus, zoned her robe
And majesty and victory sat with her
Guarding in the wide cosmic battlefield
Against the flat equality of Death
And the all-levelling insurgent Night
The hierarchy of the ordered Powers,
The high changeless values, the peaked eminences,
The privileged aristocracy of Truth,
And in the governing Ideal’s sun
The triumvirate of wisdom, love and bliss
And the sole autocracy of the absolute Light.
August on her seat in the inner world of Mind,
The Mother of Might looked down on passing things,
Listened to the advancing tread of Time,
Saw the irresistible wheeling of the suns
And heard the thunder of the march of God.

Sri Aurobindo, Savitri, Book VII, Canto IV, page 508

Inner Cleanliness

I have known people (many, not only a few, I mean among those who do yoga), I have known many who, every time they had a fine aspiration, and their aspiration was very strong and they received an answer to this aspiration, every time, the very same day or at the latest the next day, they had a complete setback of consciousness and were facing the exact opposite of their aspiration. Such things happen almost constantly. Well, these people have developed only the positive side. They make a kind of discipline of aspiration, they ask for help, they try to come into contact with higher forces, they succeed in this, they have experiences; but they have completely neglected cleaning their room; it has remained as dirty as ever, and so, naturally, when the experience has gone, this dirt becomes still more repulsive than before.

One must never neglect to clean one’s room, it is very important; inner cleanliness is at least as important as outer cleanliness.

Vivekananda has written (I don’t know the original, I have only read the French translation): “One must every morning clean one’s soul and one’s body, but if you don’t have time for both, it is better to clean the soul than clean the body.”

The Mother

The Sunlit Path, pages 48-49

All extracts and quotations from the written works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are copyright Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry -605002 India

May 10, 2017 – Success and Failure

May 10th, 2017

As in a mystic and dynamic dance
A priestess of immaculate ecstasies
Inspired and ruled from Truth’s revealing vault
Moves in some prophet cavern of the gods,
A heart of silence in the hands of joy
Inhabited with rich creative beats
A body like a parable of dawn
That seemed a niche for veiled divinity
Or golden temple-door to things beyond.
Immortal rhythms swayed in her time-born steps;
Her look, her smile awoke celestial sense
Even in earth-stuff, and their intense delight
Poured a supernal beauty on men’s lives.

Sri Aurobindo, Savitri, Book I, Canto II, page 15

Success and Failure

You must not judge things from an outer success or a semblance of defeat. We may say — and generally this is what almost always happens — we could say that the Divine gives what one desires, and of all lessons this is the best! For, if your desire is inconscient, obscure, egoistic, you increase the unconsciousness, the darkness and egoism within yourself; that is to say, this takes you farther and farther away from the truth, from consciousness and happiness. It takes you far away from the Divine. And for the Divine, naturally, only one thing is true — the divine Consciousness, the divine Union. And each time you put material things in front, you become more and more materialistic and go farther and farther away from full success.

But for the Truth that other success is a terrible defeat…. You have exchanged truth for falsehood!

To judge from appearances and apparent success is precisely an act of complete ignorance. Even for the most hardened man, for whom everything has apparently been successful, even for him there is always a counterpart. And this kind of hardening of the being which is produced, this veil which is formed, a thicker and thicker veil, between the outer consciousness and the inner truth, becomes, one day or another, altogether intolerable. It is usually paid for very dearly — outer success.

(Mother’s voice becomes extremely deep.) One must be very great, very pure, have a very high and very disinterested spiritual consciousness in order to be successful without being affected by it. Nothing is more difficult than being successful. This, indeed, is the true test of life!

When you do not succeed, quite naturally you turn back on yourself and within yourself, and you seek within yourself the consolation for your outer failure. And to those who have a flame within them — if the Divine really wants to help them, if they are mature enough to be helped, if they are ready to follow the path — blows will come one after another, because this helps! It is the most powerful, the most direct, most effective help. If you succeed, be on your guard, ask yourself: “At what price, what cost have I bought success? I hope it is not a step towards…”

There are those who have gone beyond this, those who are conscious of their soul, those who have given themselves entirely, those who — as I said — are absolutely pure, disinterested, and can succeed without its affecting and touching them; here, then, it is different. But one must be very high to be able to bear success. And after all, it is perhaps the last test which the Divine gives to anyone: “Now that you are noble, you are disinterested, you have no egoism, you belong only to me, I am going to make you triumph. We are going to see if you will hold out.”

The Mother

The Sunlit Path, pages 165-67

All extracts and quotations from the written works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are copyright Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry -605002 India

May 3, 2017 – Let the All-Consciousness Decide

May 3rd, 2017

In this high signal moment of the gods
Answering earth’s yearning and her cry for bliss,
A greatness from our other countries came.

Sri Aurobindo, Savitri, Book IV, Canto I, page 353

Let the All-Consciousness Decide

I am fully convinced that the confusion [in the world] is there to teach us how to live from day to day, that is to say, not to be preoccupied with what may happen, what will happen, just to occupy oneself day by day with doing what one has to do. All thinkings, pre-plannings, arrangements and all that, are very favourable to much disorder.

To live almost minute by minute, to be like that (gesture upward), attentive only to the thing that is to be done at the moment, and then to let the All-Consciousness decide…. We can never know things even with the widest vision: we can know things only very partially — very partially. So our attention is drawn this way and that, and still other things are there. By giving great importance to things dangerous and harmful, you only add strength to them.

(Mother goes into contemplation)

When you are assailed by the vision of such disorder and confusion, you have to do only one thing, to enter into the consciousness where you see only one Being, one Consciousness, one Power — there is only a single Unity — and all this is taking place within this Unity. And all our insignificant visions and knowings and judgments and… all that is mere nothing, it is microscopic in comparison with the Consciousness presiding over All. Therefore, if one had the least sense of the reason why separate individualities existed, one would see that it was only for allowing aspiration, the existence of aspiration, of this movement of self-giving and surrender, trust and faith. And it is this that is the very reason why individuals were built up; and then, for you to become that in all sincerity and intensity… it is all that is needed.

It is all that is needed, it is the only thing, the only thing that stays; all the rest… phantasmagoria.

And it is the only thing valid in every case: when you want to do a thing, when you cannot do a thing, when you move, when the body is no more able to move…in every, every case, that only, only that: to come in conscious contact with the Supreme Consciousness, to be united with it; and… to wait. There!

It is then that you receive the exact indication of what you ought to do at each minute — to do or not to do, to act or to be stone still. That is all. And even to be or not to be. That is the only solution. More and more, more and more, the certitude is there: this is the only solution. All the rest is mere childishness.

The Mother

The Sunlit Path, pages 238-39

All extracts and quotations from the written works of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother are copyright Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Pondicherry -605002 India