I was a passionate lover of work, Mother, and thought that I was a great worker. Work for the sake of work, the greatest amount of work, was regarded by me as the greatest good, and I always sought opportunities where I would find the greatest scope for my energy and activity.
I did not know then that I was labouring under a great delusion, that what I regarded as my work was not really mine, but Nature’s play in me; that when I regarded myself as being most active, I was really a helpless tool in the hands of the forces of Nature. In ignorance, I identified myself with these activities of Nature in me, I took an absorbing interest in the results, thinking them to be my own, and so the play went on indefinitely, and I lived the life of an enchanted slave.
At last, in Thy Grace, Thou hast opened my eyes, Mother, and shown me the true way of escape, and given me the taste of true liberty. Still the attachment is not wholly gone, still I lose myself in the mechanical play of Nature. Even when Thou workest through me, Mother, I think that it is the work of my ego, and I judge the results from the egoistic standpoint.
Remove this egoism and attachment completely from me, Mother, let me dissociate myself completely from the lower nature. I shall be really a free agent and a great worker only when my identification with Thee becomes complete.
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Whatever we may do, great or small, can be done in a perfect manner; there is a right way of doing everything. But in our egoistic ignorance we do things most clumsily; we grope and stumble and seem to arrive at success merely by chance.
We are open to all sorts of forces, which continually pull us in all directions. Our mind is ever restless, and cannot remain fixed to anything for a long time. Our body is bound by fixed habits and instincts, and does not allow a free movement. We rely on our own power, we think that the results solely depend on our own exertions; we seek the satisfactions of our personal ends and desires, we are agitated by egoistic passions and emotions; we are impatient, fidgety, restless, sometimes excited, sometimes depressed, often indifferent. It is no wonder that our greatest efforts produce such mean results, and our works leave behind such unpleasant reactions and bondage.
The secret is to rise above the ego and to work always for Thee, Mother, with the aid of Thy force and Thy will. We must leave the consequences entirely in Thy hands. We must see only what we have to do and do it with all our heart and soul. Working, thus, always in union with Thee, and for Thy sake, keeping our heart full of Thee, Mother, we can never go wrong, can never come to grief. At last a time will come when Thou wilt take up all our work, and directly use us as the instrument of Thy Will. Only then will all our work be perfect and divine.
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Work is a great force through which we can establish our union with Thee, Mother; there is nothing wrong in work itself; it is the false attitude behind our work and our ignorant handling of it that makes work a bondage.
We act for personal gains and ignorantly think that the results of our actions depend on our personal efforts, and that our life, our very existence depends on such work. Hence we are perturbed by hope and fear, we are disturbed by success and failure; and work done in this restless, ignorant, egoistic way becomes most imperfect and stumbling, and inevitably by its reactions forges the chains, which keep us bound to the lower life. Egoistic desires and personal motives have a validity only in the lowest scale in life. When we want to rise and fulfil the true mission of our life, they become great obstacles, and hide the Truth from us.
It is ignorance to think that, unless we act from egoistic motives, there can be no action. Everyone has a mission to fulfil in life, a divine mission, and the impulse we feel for work rises from this fundamental need of our nature. If we can free ourselves from the perturbations of the lower nature, our higher nature will spontaneously express itself in the right work in the right way. Instead of wasting ourselves in blind, useless efforts, we should calmly aspire to know the work which Thou demandest from us, Mother, and do it with all our heart and soul. Through such impersonal and dedicated work, we shall gradually realise our union and identity with Thee.
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Work is of value to us as a part of our sadhana only when it serves to bring us closer to Thee, Mother; otherwise, it is an obstacle, a waste of time and energy, a mere concession to the ignorant hankering of our vital nature.
As long as we are attached to our work, and feel interested in the egoistic play of our energies, it keeps us hopelessly bound to the lower life, and obscures the Divine from our view. But if it can be turned to the service of the Divine, at once it ceases to be a bondage, and becomes itself a great force of liberation.
As work is an inevitable necessity of our nature, we should use it for our uplift by making it more and more selfless and devoted to the service of the Mother. Thus purified, we begin to get the direct touch of the Mother, to hear her voice within us, to receive direct guidance and inspiration from her; work, then, becomes a great joy and a great force of transformation.
Gradually, we shall feel that we are only instruments in the hands of the divine Mother, mere channels for her manifestation in the world. In our work, we shall see the play of her forces; instead of being ignorantly attached to our work, we shall through it be attached to the Mother. Our work will make our devotion more deep; our devotion will make our work more perfect and joyous; thus, through devoted work and active devotion, we shall grow in light and power and joy, and ultimately become one with the consciousness of the Divine Mother.
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We think that unless we act constantly with the mind, all our actions will cease and our whole life will be disorganised. This is an ignorance which we must get rid of before we can make any progress towards a higher life.
As a matter of fact our mind is only used as an instrument in the hands of Nature for her own ends. The simple activities of the body are carried on instinctively and automatically, and the mind only creates confusion, when it interferes with its thoughts, prejudices and beliefs. The body has a consciousness of its own, and if left to itself can carry on its activities perfectly within certain limits. The mind is used for more complex actions; but here also it proceeds in a halting and imperfect manner. Our work will be perfect when we shall rise above these lower activities of Nature and give up all our work to be directly initiated and guided from above by the supramental power. The body must be made more and more conscious and open, so that it may receive impulses from above and carry them out, the mind only serving as a free and open channel of communication.
So we must make our body and mind calm and free, open them to the Truth and allow the Truth to use them as plastic instruments; only then will our work be perfect, will be an expression of the divine will in and through us.