From the very day of my arrival in the Ashram I was hearing a great deal about the Mother’s Force. Everybody was talking about this Force as if it had been synonymous with the Mother herself! When someone was sick, met with some difficulty in work, faced a problem in study or an obstruction in the inner sadhana, he invoked the Mother’s Force and it usually worked. This calling and the intervention of the Force seemed so spontaneous that nobody took it as anything but natural. It assumed the form of a miracle only in some rare cases. That was when the problem had already become so complicated that it did not get solved by a mere prayer and the Mother’s personal intervention had to be sought.
Being new and too young to understand all this, I asked Sri Aurobindo what exactly was this unique thing called “the Mother’s Force”. Was it the same thing as the divine Shakti? There came forth one of the most beautiful and comprehensive explanations on the Mother he has ever given me in a few lines:
There is one divine Force which acts in the universe and in the individual and is also beyond the individual and the universe. The Mother stands for all these, but she is working here in the body to bring down something not yet expressed in this material world so as to transform life here — it is so that you should regard her as the Divine Shakti working here for that purpose. She is that in the body, but in her whole consciousness she is also identified with all the other aspects of the Divine Force.
The Master further explained the relationship between the Mother and Her Force:
THE MOTHER’S FORCE
When I speak of the Mother’s Force I do not speak of the force of the Prakriti which carries on things of the Ignorance but of the higher Force of the Divine that descends from above to transform the nature. The Mother’s Force is the manifestation of the Mother herself. . . .
It is the Divine Force which works to remove the ignorance and change the nature into the divine Nature.
We little human beings can never fathom the full glory of the Mother’s personality. Such is the case with the Mother’s Force too. How much potency it must have that it not only removes the Ignorance but also changes and transforms the nature into the divine Nature, a process which was never attempted in the old Yogas. Sri Aurobindo tried to enlighten me further about the workings of this Force in my correspondence:
MYSELF: Sometimes, if not often, the Mother’s Force comes down, carries on some work and disappears. When once it has descended why has it to go back and then return?
SRI AUROBINDO: So long as you cannot contain its action, there is no other way.
MYSELF: In that case, generally speaking, is not every sadhak ready to receive and contain the Mother’s Force at any time and in any circumstances? Who on earth would not like to hold its constant action?
SRI AUROBINDO: It is not a question of mental wish but of capacity and whether all the parts of the being are ready and can retain it. If everybody were containing the constant action of the Mother’s Force, the sadhana would be finished by now and the siddhi complete.
MYSELF: You wrote, “Ask for the consciousness of her Force.” Does it mean that I should aspire to the Mother to know about her Force and how and where its workings are in me?
SRI AUROBINDO: Yes — not to know with the mind only, but to feel them and see them with inner experience.
Finally I may quote a most enlightening answer to a question by me:
MYSELF: When a sadhak does his work with the right attitude and calls down the Mother’s Force into him freely and directly, how does it act to remove his defects?
SRI AUROBINDO: It acts by awakening the inner consciousness gradually or swiftly, by replacing the principle of ego-service by the principle of service of the Divine, by making him watch his actions and see his own defects and pushing him to rectify them, by establishing a connection between his consciousness and the Mother’s Consciousness, by preparing his nature to be taken up more and more by the Mother’s Consciousness and Force, by giving him experiences which make him ready for the major experiences of Yoga, by stimulating the growth of his psychic being, by opening him to the Mother as the universal Being etc. etc. Naturally it acts differently in different persons.