A Talk by Alok Pandey from “Tuesday Talks” series (AUDIO)
Each Avatara opens the way towards the Future. He holds His own example before humanity and gives a path to walk on with His help. Lord Rama showed the way of the warrior soul that must battle against the asuric elements, tame and master the animal within us and thereby arrive at an idealized humanity. Sri Krishna showed the way of works, jnana and devotion, the triple path so to say. Buddha gave to Earth the Middle path and the eightfold Way. Christ brought down the Divine Love that heals and taught to humanity the way of Compassion and Charity. Sri Aurobindo went further opening the way to a divinization of nature and the Sunlit Path of the Supramental Yoga. We share a little glimpse of this sunlit path opened for earth and man.
Words of Sri Aurobindo
Mother spoke to me of the right attitude as one without tension and strain, one which is full of sunshine and as spontaneous as a flower opening to the light. This is all very well for beings like you and the Mother, who are Avatars, but how can we poor mortals take this vague prescription for guidance? And how to get this attitude if not through constant prayer, arduous meditation and a constant effort to reject wrong movements?
You say that this way is too difficult for you or the likes of you and it is only “avatars” like myself or the Mother that can do it. That is a strange misconception, for it is on the contrary the easiest and simplest and most direct way and anyone can do it, if he makes his mind and vital quiet, even those who have a tenth of your capacity can do it. It is the other way of tension and strain and hard endeavour that is difficult and needs a great force of Tapasya. As for the Mother and myself, we have had to try all ways, follow all methods, to surmount mountains of difficulties, a far heavier burden to bear than you or anybody else in this Asram or outside, far more difficult conditions, battles to fight, wounds to endure, ways to cleave through impenetrable morass and desert and forest, hostile masses to conquer, a work such as I am certain none else had to do before us. For the Leader of the Way in a work like ours has not only to bring down and represent and embody the Divine, but to represent too the ascending element in humanity and to bear the burden of humanity to the full and experience not in a mere play or lıla but in grim earnest all the obstruction, difficulty, opposition, baffled and hampered and only slowly victorious labour which are possible on the Path. But it is not necessary nor tolerable that all that should be repeated over again to the full in the experience of others. It is because we have the complete experience that we can show a straighter and easier road to others—if they will only consent to take it. It is because of our experience won at a tremendous price that we can urge upon you and others, “Take the psychic attitude; follow the straight sunlit path, with the Divine openly or secretly upbearing you—if secretly, he will yet show himself in good time,—do not insist on the hard, hampered, roundabout and difficult journey.”
The sunlit path can only be followed if the psychic is constantly or usually in front or if one has a natural spirit of faith and surrender or a face turned habitually towards the sun or psychic predisposition (e.g. a faith in one’s spiritual destiny) or if he has acquired the psychic turn. That does not mean that the sunlit man has no difficulties; he may have many, but he regards them cheerfully as “all in the day’s work”. If he gets bad beatings, he is capable of saying, “Well, that was a queer go, but the Divine is evidently in a queer mood and if that is his way of doing things, it must be the right one; I am surely a still queerer fellow myself and that, I suppose, was the only means of putting me right.” But everybody can’t be of that turn, and surrender which would put everything right is, as you say, difficult to do completely. That is why we do not insist on total surrender at once, but are satisfied with a little to begin with, the rest to grow as it can.
Words of the Mother
Well – everything is a bit confused…. I feel that everything is being cut away from me, on all sides; the feeling of being pushed onto a path where I’ll end up regarding the world as an illusion.
That’s your thorny garment again!
On my part, well…. What I saw for you, what I’ve been seeing since the day before yesterday, is just the opposite: it is something being loosened up. Only I plainly see that … there’s also a worthless road that must not be followed; and both roads are very close together. Why so close! It’s like those two rooms: why are they so near each other? If only there were some distance! But no, it’s all intertwined.
And it’s the same thing: what’s needed is the path of vastness, widening, relaxation, ease, of BLOSSOMING in the vital – not so much a censorial vital as … as gentleness, a certain sweetness. The vital blossoming into beauty: sweetness and beauty. I don’t want to speak of “sentiments” because … oh, that lands us right in a quagmire! No, but … a sweetness and charm and beauty – but not there (in the head): here. And then rest – not a stiff and stony and stagnant rest, a rest within the undulation…. You let yourself float
December 21, 1963
… It’s true, in fact, off and on I have fits of revolt, but more and more I’m settling into a kind of nothingness – not many things have meaning. I was very attached to life, I loved life, I found it beautiful – that’s gone.
Oh, yes, I can understand that!
But still, there was something good in that love of life, wasn’t there?
Yes … for later on, when life is different from what it is.
Now that’s gone, if I were told, “You will die tomorrow,” I wouldn’t care at all.
Of course! I understand.
And besides, that’s the almost essential condition for being capable of living another life while remaining here. It’s essential, mon petit, as long as one has the “taste for life,” one is tossed and shaken about…. I consider it a GREAT progress.
That’s very good.
The taste for life is, we could say, like a foretaste of what will be, but it isn’t at all suited to what is.
You see, when you have the certitude – the certitude – that Ananda, joy, blossoming are the Truth of your being, when you have that inner certitude and look at life as it is, it appears incredible (not the certitude, but life as it is!), an incredible deformation.
Just recently I have been observing this fact. Apart from Sri Aurobindo, all the people I have ever met and had around me were dissatisfied. And in some cases (cases of lives more constantly intimate with me), either rebels, or people terribly bitter about life as it is – which is the very opposite of my nature. I am rather on the side of those who take things quite philosophically as they are – even when I was a very small child. So then I wondered (I saw this these last few days): “Why is it like that?”
I saw that this attitude or way of feeling is like a fortress for what opposes the transformation.
I jotted down two observations this morning and kept them on the table with the idea of reading them to you (they were “remarks,” “observations”), and very clearly I was told that to have that very keen sense of discernment which sees all that is contrary to the divine Truth is very good, it’s very good not to be disappointed or deceived (in particular not to deceive oneself), but that whenever you stress on that aspect, you give it a POWER OF BEING, a sort of power that prolongs or perpetuates its existence…..
But, to tell the truth, if we could always keep in our consciousness, in a clear and living way, the vision of WHAT SHOULD BE, not with the illusion that it’s already there (there must be no illusions), but a clear, positive vision of what should be, despite all that denies it … we would be very strong. This necessity is beginning to impose itself: that’s what I am asked to do now. We KNOW things are not as they should be (God knows we know it!), but to keep deliberately ignoring those denials in order to keep ACTIVELY in the consciousness the vision of what should be – that, I feel, is true creative power…..
And all the more great and difficult since (certainly because of the necessities of the work) I am surrounded only by people who are on the other side. I don’t have around me a single optimist. All that people tell me, all that they bring to me, is always the vision (more or less clear and complete) of what should go; but the vision of what should be … I have never found it except in Sri Aurobindo.
It’s only in sudden gusts, in flashes, now and then, and only when he wrote (never when he spoke) that you could find that sort of sharp thing, of sharp discernment, like in what we translated the other day. Otherwise, when he spoke, when he was with people, there was never a negative criticism.
No one else.
From my earliest childhood (when I was five, my memories at five) and for more than eighty years, I have always been surrounded with people who brought me an abundance of revolt, discontent, and then, more and more so, cases (certain cases have been very acute and still are) of sheer ingratitude – not towards me, that doesn’t matter at all: towards the Divine. Ingratitude … that is something I have often found very, very painful – that it should exist. It’s one of the things I have seen in my life that seemed to me the most … the most intolerable – that sort of acid bitterness against the Divine, because things are as they are, because all that suffering was permitted. It takes on more or less ignorant, more or less intellectual forms … but it’s a kind of bitterness. It takes sometimes personal forms, which makes the struggle even more difficult because you can’t mix in questions of persons – it’s not a personal question, it’s an ERROR to think that there can be a single “personal” movement in the world; it’s man’s ignorant consciousness which makes it personal, but it isn’t: it’s all terrestrial attitudes.
It came with the Mind; animals don’t have that. And that’s why I feel a sweetness in animals, even the supposedly most ferocious, which doesn’t exist in man.
And yet, of all movements, the one that gives perhaps the most joy – an unalloyed joy, untainted by that egoism – is spontaneous gratitude.
It is something very special. It isn’t love, it isn’t self-offering…. It’s a very FULL joy. Very full.
It is a very special vibration unlike anything other than itself. It is something that widens you, that fills you – that is so fervent!
It is certainly, of all the movements within the reach of human consciousness, the one that draws you the most out of your ego.
And when it can be a gratitude without motive, that vibration (basically, the vibration of what exists towards the Cause of existence) … then a great many barriers vanish instantly.
(Mother contemplates that vibration of gratitude for a long time)
When you can enter that vibration in its purity, you realize immediately that it has the same quality as the vibration of Love: it is directionless. It isn’t something going from one thing to another, it doesn’t go from here to there (gesture from low to high) or there to here … it is (round gesture) simultaneous and total.
I mean it isn’t something that needs the two poles in order to exist; it doesn’t go from one pole to the other or from the other to the one: it’s a vibration which in its purity is the same as the vibration of Love, which doesn’t go from here to there or from there to here – the two poles of existence.
It exists in itself for its own delight of being. (And what I am saying spoils it a lot.)
Men have repeated ad nauseam that nothing exists without those two poles, that those two poles are the cause of existence and everything revolves around them (Mother shakes her head), but that’s not the way it is. This means that man, in his ordinary outward consciousness, cannot understand anything beyond that. There we are. That we know. But in its essence (Mother again shakes her head), Love is not like that.
Ultimately, gratitude is only a very slightly colored hue of the essential Vibration of Love.
Sutras from the Mother
If you feel your heart so tight and suffocated, you must do this: Try to open it to the Divine so that the Divine can put His Force and His Presence into it. Then, of course, you do not feel lonely and unhappy. As a flower opens to the sun, so must your heart open to the Divine. Physically one cannot open the heart but one can imagine like this ‐ by taking the example of flowers.
Truth is behind everything, for, the Divine dwells in flowers, trees, animals, birds, rivers as well as in human beings ‐ in fact, in every creation of Nature. You must have the psychic touch to see and feel the vibrations, the sensations and the essence of the truth in everything……
My work is to put human beings into the Arms of the Lord. It will be really interesting when the transformation of the body is a success! Oh! but it will come only when I remain all alone and concentrate with the work of transformation, then surely it will come quicker. My child, endure! and nestle in the Heart of the Lord like a new‐born baby simple, having faith in Him. Finally, there will be an immense Beatitude .. .
You see, this is the Divine psychological perfection. Child, in spite of all circumstances, keep a broad smile on your face. I give it to you.
And the Mother smiled. She added:
You must be happy inwardly not just outwardly. The important thing is that you must keep quiet inwardly by remaining happy in your heart. If you want to make me happy, be happy.