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At the Feet of The Mother

The Difficulty of the Transformation, pp. 688-691 (SH 337)

We read today a passage revealing the difficulty of transformation.

Then with a smile august as noonday heavens
The godhead of the vision wonderful:
“How shall earth-nature and man’s nature rise
To the celestial levels, yet earth abide?

Heaven and earth towards each other gaze
Across a gulf that few can cross, none touch,
Arriving through a vague ethereal mist
Out of which all things form that move in space,
The shore that all can see but never reach.

Heaven’s light visits sometimes the mind of earth;
Its thoughts burn in her sky like lonely stars;
In her heart there move celestial seekings soft
And beautiful like fluttering wings of birds,
Visions of joy that she can never win
Traverse the fading mirror of her dreams.

Faint seeds of light and bliss bear sorrowful flowers,
Faint harmonies caught from a half-heard song
Fall swooning mid the wandering voices’ jar,
Foam from the tossing luminous seas where dwells
The beautiful and far delight of gods,
Raptures unknown, a miracled happiness
Thrill her and pass half-shaped to mind and sense.

Above her little finite steps she feels,
Careless of knot or pause, worlds which weave out
A strange perfection beyond law and rule,
A universe of self-found felicity,
An inexpressible rhythm of timeless beats,
The many-movemented heart-beats of the One,
Magic of the boundless harmonies of self,
Order of the freedom of the infinite,
The wonder-plastics of the Absolute.

There is the All-Truth and there the timeless bliss.

But hers are fragments of a star-lost gleam, [688]
Hers are but careless visits of the gods.

They are a Light that fails, a Word soon hushed
And nothing they mean can stay for long on earth.

There are high glimpses, not the lasting sight.

A few can climb to an unperishing sun,
Or live on the edges of the mystic moon
And channel to earth-mind the wizard ray.

The heroes and the demigods are few
To whom the close immortal voices speak
And to their acts the heavenly clan are near.

Few are the silences in which Truth is heard,
Unveiling the timeless utterance in her deeps;
Few are the splendid moments of the seers.

Heaven’s call is rare, rarer the heart that heeds;
The doors of light are sealed to common mind
And earth’s needs nail to earth the human mass,
Only in an uplifting hour of stress
Men answer to the touch of greater things:
Or, raised by some strong hand to breathe heaven-air,
They slide back to the mud from which they climbed;
In the mud of which they are made, whose law they know
They joy in safe return to a friendly base,
And, though something in them weeps for glory lost
And greatness murdered, they accept their fall.

To be the common man they think the best,
To live as others live is their delight.

For most are built on Nature’s early plan
And owe small debt to a superior plane;
The human average is their level pitch,
A thinking animal’s material range.

In the long ever-mounting hierarchy,
In the stark economy of cosmic life
Each creature to its appointed task and place
Is bound by his nature’s form, his spirit’s force.

If this were easily disturbed, it would break
The settled balance of created things; [689]
The perpetual order of the universe
Would tremble, and a gap yawn in woven Fate.

If men were not and all were brilliant gods,
The mediating stair would then be lost
By which the spirit awake in Matter winds
Accepting the circuits of the middle Way,
By heavy toil and slow aeonic steps
Reaching the bright miraculous fringe of God,
Into the glory of the Oversoul.

My will, my call is there in men and things;
But the Inconscient lies at the world’s grey back
And draws to its breast of Night and Death and Sleep.

Imprisoned in its dark and dumb abyss
A little consciousness it lets escape
But jealous of the growing light holds back
Close to the obscure edges of its cave
As if a fond ignorant mother kept her child
Tied to her apron strings of Nescience.

The Inconscient could not read without man’s mind
The mystery of the world its sleep has made:
Man is its key to unlock a conscious door.

But still it holds him dangled in its grasp:
It draws its giant circle round his thoughts,
It shuts his heart to the supernal Light.

A high and dazzling limit shines above,
A black and blinding border rules below:
His mind is closed between two firmaments.

He seeks through words and images the Truth,
And, poring on surfaces and brute outsides
Or dipping cautious feet in shallow seas,
Even his Knowledge is an Ignorance.

He is barred out from his own inner depths;
He cannot look on the face of the Unknown.

How shall he see with the Omniscient’s eyes,
How shall he will with the Omnipotent’s force?
O too compassionate and eager Dawn, [p.690]
Leave to the circling aeons’ tardy pace
And to the working of the inconscient Will,
Leave to its imperfect light the earthly race:
All shall be done by the long act of Time.

[Savitri, pp. 688 – 691]

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