B1 C1 Movement 1 Passage-by-Passage Summary
The birth of aspiration and opening to the Light
Insensibly somewhere a breach began:
A long lone line of hesitating hue
Like a vague smile tempting a desert heart
Troubled the far rim of life’s obscure sleep.
The awakening of aspiration in earth-consciousness seals its destiny. This awakening occurs in matter as a flame lit in a cup of clay. This happens before man arrives upon earth. However with man this aspiration becomes conscious and thereby capable of hastening the process of divinization of the clay, for which the Earth is made. The birth of aspiration brings hope, sows love; is felt as a smile of Deity drawing us closer to our Divine Origin. Yet the powers of Night and all that is under its dark influence feels it as a trouble and a disturbance, since it means effort towards change.
The Divine response to Earth’s aspiration
Arrived from the other side of boundlessness
An eye of deity peered through the dumb deeps;
A scout in a reconnaissance from the sun,
It seemed amid a heavy cosmic rest,
The torpor of a sick and weary world,
To seek for a spirit sole and desolate
Too fallen to recollect forgotten bliss.
It is the Divine who awakens or rather becomes the aspiration in matter. This aspiration prepares the Earth for the Divine Advent. The Divine response arrives from the ‘other side of Boundlessness’ as a Grace and Light and Force to redeem Earth. At first it reaches out to earth as Truth-Light to awaken us. But Earth is in a state of stupor, and the Bliss that built the worlds is not felt due to the state of obscurity in which the Earth is plunged. In fact there is a luminous Earth that is conscious of the Bliss, but here, even as the Earth consciousness plunges into and becomes this gross matter, it forgets its own high state.
The Intervention of Saviour-Light
Intervening in a mindless universe,
Its message crept through the reluctant hush
Calling the adventure of consciousness and joy
And, conquering Nature’s disillusioned breast, (p.3 begins)
Compelled renewed consent to see and feel.
Nevertheless, the divine intervention takes place and calls Earth to a new adventure. The call is felt in the heart of Nature that is still in a state of torpor and disillusionment. There is felt a compulsion to attempt and the urge towards a new effort. There is a renewed consent, that is to say, this is not the first time that this effort is being undertaken. Perhaps the memory of earlier cycles of effort and failure or partial successes is held within. Now, once again, the Earth is seized with this urge to grow towards the Light.
Rebirth of the Earth
A thought was sown in the unsounded Void,
A sense was born within the darkness’ depths,
A memory quivered in the heart of Time
As if a soul long dead were moved to live:
But the oblivion that succeeds the fall,
Had blotted the crowded tablets of the past,
And all that was destroyed must be rebuilt
And old experience laboured out once more.
There is a psychic memory of the Earth, where the essence of all previous efforts is preserved. Even as the psychic memories of an individual are never destroyed but reintegrated with his rebirth into a new form, so too, the psychic memories of earth are never destroyed. There is an inner continuity, even though outwardly forms that once lived upon earth are destroyed with each pralaya. But all is not lost. The memory of old efforts becomes the basis of the new one. Yet this must first be recovered and given a new form, appropriate to the evolutionary urge within it.
All can be done if the god-touch is there.
This is no easy path. But there is hope since matter is touched by the Divine Advent. With the Divine Touch everything becomes possible.
There are interesting myths in Indian thought that convey this idea of god-touch. In one myth, it is said that Rama’s touch liberated the stone-like Ahilya and turned her into a celestial being by his redeeming divine touch. Similarly we have the story of Krishna, whose divine touch turned a deformed ugly woman into a beautiful maiden. The stories are obviously symbolic rather than being accounts of impossible miracles.
The birth of hope
A hope stole in that hardly dared to be
Amid the Night’s forlorn indifference.
Disillusionment is conquered and hope and faith are born. This is the first crucial step, the first conquest of the Divine in Matter, the prelude to all other victories.
The errant Marvel
As if solicited in an alien world
With timid and hazardous instinctive grace,
Orphaned and driven out to seek a home,
An errant marvel with no place to live,
Into a far-off nook of heaven there came
A slow miraculous gesture’s dim appeal.
The Light has strayed out of its Home. It has emerged out of the Home of Truth into a world of darkness. Though timid and shy in an unwanted world, yet is its touch a compelling one. It must now build a place for itself upon Earth. Slowly there is a response in the higher layers of earth consciousness. The Light first touches these higher parts that wake up and respond to the Glory that has left its Abode and seeks to find a home on Earth. It is a perfect symbol of the mountain peaks first receiving the Light as it enters the Earth. It is experienced as a marvel that has as if erroneously set its feet here, choosing to stay amidst terrestrial darkness. The same happens with the divine messengers upon Earth. While humanity may marvel at them or feel a greatness and a power, they yet move as if a stranger on the earthly scene.
The persistent thrill
The persistent thrill of a transfiguring touch
Persuaded the inert black quietude
And beauty and wonder disturbed the fields of God.
But the Light persists in its effort to dissolve darkness. It refuses to give up, even though it meets a dull response. It penetrates deeper and deeper layers until it touches the very bottom of the abyss. Though it is a Beauty and wonder brought down to Earth, yet the Inconscient feels it as a disturbance, refusing to give up its domain and yield itself to the Light. The fields of God are the several layers and levels of Nature, the various worlds right from the Superconscient to the very bottom of the Inconscient. They belong to the Lord and one day the Lord will fully possess them and fill them with His wonder and delight.
A gate of dreams
A wandering hand of pale enchanted light
That glowed along a fading moment’s brink,
Fixed with gold panel and opalescent hinge
A gate of dreams ajar on mystery’s verge.
The Light works at first in the inner being of Earth. It touches the most receptive part of our inner being, some portion of the mind or heart and of course the soul. Through this door we are given a brief glimpse of the higher states, that will be born with passage of time. Just as when beholding the sun at dawn we forget awhile our hard material earth and enter a beautiful reverie, so too the touch of Light liberates us from our outer consciousness, and our inner being experiences uplifting moments and dreams of Beauty and Light yet to be fully born. The gold panel refers to the sun which is the perfect symbol of the supramental Light. The opalescent hinges are the overmind and below that break the One Light into many components. This dream state experienced in our inner being is a door that opens to things Beyond.
One lucent corner
One lucent corner windowing hidden things
Forced the world’s blind immensity to sight.
The lucent corner is the part that is open to the Light. It could be the mind or the heart though we can best glimpse it through the psychic being.
The darkness fails releasing the hidden god
The darkness failed and slipped like a falling cloak
From the reclining body of a god.
The long and slow preparation ends up with a sudden and swift response. Our cloak of obscurity and darkness simply falls away from us, releasing in us the god. This is the birth of the gods in us after a long battle with the powers of darkness and Night, referred to in the Vedas. Our nature, that was resisting initially, is suddenly lit up by the Light. The dark veil, thrown by the Inconscient on the hidden Deity, is removed as more and more Light invades the fields of nature until all in us is bathed in Light and Beauty and Love.
The above passage and its vivid images of the ascending sun and the growing morning Light applies to the human journey towards the Light as well. There is a divinity hidden in all things, but it is covered with a cloak of Ignorance, a shroud of Death so to say. It emerges slowly through a long battle with the powers of Night that hold it back. At first we resist, then slowly and unwillingly consent with a vague and unclear seeking, then the aspiration grows and hope is born and the effort begins. Slowly we receive the first glimpses of Beauty and the divine wonder hidden to our sight. Parts of our nature, that are most ready open, are lit up. We undergo a marvelous change. We begin to dream of Beauty, and feel ourselves on the verge of a great discovery. The Night begins to fade away. And for all this the Divine needs just one small opening. He widens it progressively until we are suddenly ablaze with the inner sight, that beholds the Mystery and Wonder of the God-touch.