This sonnet was published in the Calcutta Review in October 1934. Two months earlier, Sri Aurobindo asked his secretary to type copies of this poem and three others (“The Other Earths”, “The World Game” and “Symbol Moon”) from the notebook in which they and others had been written.
This sonnet was published in the Calcutta Review in October 1934. Its first draft occurs just after the first draft of “Transformation”, which is dated 16 October 1933; thus it belongs, in all probability, to the year 1933.
Nirvana. August 1934. This sonnet was written while the texts of “Transformation” and “The Other Earths” were being prepared for publication in the Calcutta Review. It was published along with them in that journal in October 1934. There are two handwritten manuscripts and one typed manuscript of this poem.
Man the Thinking Animal. Circa 1934. Five handwritten manuscripts and one typed manuscript, the earliest contemporaneous with close-to-final drafts of “Transformation” and “The Other Earths”.
What opposites are here! A trivial life Specks the huge dream of Death called Matter; intense In its struggle of weakness towards omnipotence, A thinking mind starts from the unthinking strife In the order of the electric elements. Immortal life breathed in that monstrous death, A mystery of Knowledge wore as sheath Matter’s mute nescience. Read More
The Silver Call. Written on or before 25 April 1934 (when Sri Aurobindo quoted five lines in a letter to Dilip Kumar Roy); revised 1944. Five handwritten manuscripts and one typed manuscript; the first handwritten manuscript was written shortly after those of the two preceding sonnets. The original poem went through several versions, eventually becoming two, “The Silver Call” and “The Call of the Impossible”.
Evolution 1, a sonnet by Sri Aurobindo. Written in 1934, revised 1944. Five handwritten manuscripts and one typed manuscript. This poem and “The Silver Call” were often worked on together.
Recitation by Aravinda Maheshwari.
1934; revised subsequently. Four handwritten manuscripts and one typed manuscript. This poem began as a variant of “The Silver Call”: the first lines of the two poems were once identical — “There is a godhead in unrealised things” — and the first rhyming words remain the same even in the final versions.
A might no human will nor force can gain,
A knowledge seated in eternity,
A bliss beyond our struggle and our pain
Are the high pinnacles of our destiny …
“Rooted in mire heavenward man’s nature grows, —
His soul the dim bud of God’s flaming rose.”
….A little life wearing the flesh for robe,
A little mind winged through wide space to run.
It lived, it knew, it saw its self sublime,
Deathless, outmeasuring Space, outlasting Time.
“…Our truths discovered are but dust and trace
Of the eternal Energy in her race.”
What points ascending Nature to her goal?
’Tis not man’s lame transcribing intellect
With its carved figures rigid and erect
But the far subtle vision of his soul…”
“… An algebra of signs, a scheme of sense,
A symbol language without depth or wings,
A power to handle deftly outward things
Are our scant earnings of intelligence.”