Emptiness and Fullness

The year 1934

In the afternoons I feel a voidness in the consciousness. It increases greatly during the general evening Meditation. This voidness is a new thing for me. Kindly explain it.

The voidness (if by that you mean silence and emptiness of thoughts, movements etc.) is the basic condition into which the higher consciousness can flow.

This morning and evening my consciousness was silent and receptive as usual; it received the Mother’s grace and at the same time felt a voidness. That is, there was no movement, inner or outer.

The voidness is the best condition for a full receptivity.

I was returning from the Pranam. The thrill of the Mother’s touch had filled my being with joy and love. On the way I met X. I just happened to touch her with a notebook I had with me.

Afterwards I asked X about the result of the touch. She replied, “Before you touched me I was in a state of depression but afterwards I experienced happiness.”

Was it a mistake to touch her instead of remaining withdrawn in myself?

Certainly it is better not to touch. As it happened it had a good effect, but if the happiness has to flow out to another, it can be done without touch.

What made me touch her? I never dreamt of sharing anything of this kind with anybody.

It was probably an automatic movement of the vital consciousness. There is a tendency in the vital to connect with others and participate.

I would like to know how I got N’s pain. Either it was consciously transferred to me or it naturally entered into me.

Naturally entered. When there is the development of the Self-realisation or of the cosmic consciousness or if there is the emptiness which is the preliminary condition for these things, there comes an automatic tendency for a unity with all — their affections, mental, vital, physical may easily touch. One has to keep oneself free.

What is the meaning of the word “affections” used by you here with regard to people?

“Affections” here has not the ordinary sense — it means “ways in which they are affected by things e.g. joy, grief, pleasure, pain, illness etc.”

(Today also the same emptiness continues.) How is one to reconcile these two notions — “You cannot feel emptiness unless you are full, and you cannot experience fullness if you are not void.”

The void is a condition for the fullness coming, in that sense the last part is true. I do not quite understand the other. Perhaps it is true in the sense that what seems emptiness is often a fullness of the peace.

Specially after seeing the Mother there is a deeper and greater voidness. Do you think that what is felt as a void is not true? Since about a week whatever is experienced is this emptiness and nothing else.

Why not true? The void is the condition of the Self — free, wide and silent. It seems void to the mind but in reality it is simply a state of pure existence and consciousness. Sat and Chit with Shanti.

Yesterday you wrote, “Sat and Chit with Shanti”. Why “with Shanti” — that is to say, “with peace”?

The three things are Sat, Chit and Ananda — but at this stage there is more usually the Shanti than the Ananda.

Shanti is peace or calm — it is not Ananda. There can of course be a calm Ananda.

Ananda comes afterwards — even if it comes at the beginning it is not usually constant. Wideness does not come because the consciousness is not yet free from the body. Probably when what is felt above the head comes down, it will be liberated into the wideness.

My human consciousness feels too tired to sustain itself in a steady blankness.

It must be the vital wanting to move about.

Was it really the vital getting tired of the blankness? Or could it rather be the physical? As a result of the fatigue I was getting mechanical thoughts.

The physical does not get tired of the blankness. It may feel tamasic because of its own tendency to inertia, but it does not usually object to voidness. Of course it may be the vital physical. You have only to reject it as a remnant of the old movements.

Emptiness is a state of quietude of the mental or vital or all the consciousness not visited by any mind or vital movements, but open to the Pure Existence and ready or tending to be that or already that but not yet realised in its full power of being. Which of these conditions it happens to be depends on the particular case. The Self state or the state of pure existence is sometimes also called emptiness, but only in the sense that it is a state of sheer static rest of being without any contacts of mobile Nature.

When I try to keep the being silent and blank the whole thing appears empty and without interest to the vital.

Certainly, the vital cannot take an interest in a blank condition. If you depend on your vital you cannot prolong it. It is the spirit that feels a release in the silence empty of all mental or other activities, for in that silence it becomes self-aware. For the blankness to be real one must have got into the Purusha or Witness Consciousness. If you are looking at it with your mind or vital, then there is not blankness, for even if there are not distinct thoughts then there must be a mental attitude or mental vibrations — e.g. the not feeling interest.

Could one have a great fullness of spiritual being and at the same time a deepening of emptiness?

Without the emptiness there can be no fullness.

How is it possible to have fullness and emptiness at the same time?

I meant that in the higher consciousness that simultaneous experience was quite natural. It is the same with complete rest and full activity, — experience of infinite impersonality and of the true person. All these (and many other things also) are to the mind incompatible, but in the higher consciousness they go together.

In my present state, I can’t keep any aspiration for further progress. Is it all right to lose it?

If not aspiration, at least keep the idea of what is necessary — (1) that the silence and peace shall become a wideness which you can realise as the Self — (2) the extension of the silent consciousness upwards as well so that you may feel its source above you — (3) the presence of peace etc., all the time. These things need not all come at once, but by realising what has to be in your mind, any falling towards a condition of inertia can be avoided.

What is established in the emptiness?

What is established in the emptiness is pure existence consciousness, peace and bliss. Into that all things can come, yet it remains always the same.

Is it not true that nothing of this world can touch the pure existence?

Yes, the pure existence is intangible.

What would be the difference between my present state of emptiness and its future development?

The only difference is that what you feel as a negative emptiness, you will feel positively as the Self or the pure existence consciousness, peace and bliss.

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