Value and Sadhana Elements

 

You said, “Trances and experiences have their value. There is no question of less or more important — each thing has its place.” How to find the place or value of different things in our sadhana? If we give equal value to everything we do, will not our life become like a machine?

It is not a question of giving an equal value to everything you do, but of recognising the value of all the different elements of the sadhana. No such rule can be made as that trances are of little value or that experiences are of inferior importance any more than it can be said that work is of no or inferior importance.

How are we to recognise “the value of all the different elements of our sadhana” when we are not aware of its inner or subtle processes?

I was not speaking of giving a correct value or establishing a table of values, but of recognising that each has some importance in the total working, not disparaging as some do and saying “Meditation and experiences have no value, only work is the thing” — or “What can work do for siddhi, without meditation and experiences?”

Yesterday I went to the Dining Hall for flytoxing work and didn’t feel much fatigue. But today after doing the same work I felt so tired! Why such a difference when both days I went for the same purpose?

It does not depend upon the purpose, but on some element or other in the total condition of the consciousness. What that element is has to be seen — there is no rule.

Can you not say what are these elements so that I can try to find out their relation with work and fatigue?

You seem to want to reduce everything to a catalogue and a scientific analysis. Nobody has ever been able to do that with the working of the consciousness. The elements of a condition of consciousness cannot be classified like the “elements” of Matter.

You wrote the other day: “What that element is has to be seen — there is no rule.” How can I see that element unless I know something about the elements? I don’t even know what is meant by “elements” here.

Elements are things that constitute. Elements of a condition of consciousness are things that constitute it. It is a perfectly general and vague phrase and meant to be so. One cannot know the total condition of one’s consciousness by books or by classifications, but only by observation, vision and an increasing self-knowledge within.

About the scientific classification of the elements of consciousness, well, people say that Yoga is a kind of science.

It is not physical science where everything can be analysed and measured or where there are a certain number of processes which can always be repeated at will with an exact mechanical precision and control or by a device like turning a button for the electric light.

You wrote to me, “Those who seek the self by the old Yogas separate themselves from mind, life and body and realise the self apart from these things.” How do they manage to do it so easily? Will not the mind, life and body interfere with their realisation, since to make it possible these parts must withdraw from their ordinary movements of tamas, rajas and sattwa?

Of course they will — it can only be prevented by the lower movements if you assent to the lower movements; one who refuses to accept them as his real being can always withdraw from them to the self. The movements of Nature become for them an outer thing not belonging to their true being and having no power to pull them down from it.

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