Guiding Light of The Month

THERE is a great difference between being in the midst of active work, of external action, while keeping one’s thought constantly fixed on Thee, and entering into that perfect union with Thee which leads to what I have called “absolute Consciousness, true Omniscience, Knowledge”. - The Mother

“An hour began, the matrix of new Time”

The first prayer of the New Year of 1914 on January 1, 1914, “consecrated the first minute of this new year”, has the Mother’s deeply devotional invocation to The Divine:

“ I bow down in deep devotion and in boundless gratitude before Thy beneficent splendour; in the name of the earth I give Thee thanks for manifesting Thyself; in its name I implore Thee to manifest Thyself ever more fully, in an uninterrupted growth of Light and Love.”

This year she would make the momentous passage to India and meet Sri Aurobindo on March 29th, 1914.

Her heart unveiled and his to find her turned;
Attracted as in heaven star by star,
They wondered at each other and rejoiced
And wove affinity in a silent gaze.
A moment passed that was eternity’s ray,
An hour began, the matrix of new Time.
- ‘Savitri’, Book 5, Canto 2

The ‘Prayers and Meditations’ of The Mother written from March 3rd 1914 before her departure for India up to March 30 1914, where she would write “He whom we saw yesterday is on earth….” are a precious personal account of the momentous journey, her aspirations, hopes and mystical experiences along the way.

The Prayer of March 3rd 1914 is a poignant one and has the Mother reflecting on the day of departure which is close and in a state of deep communion with the Divine, she turns her gaze to the future and says

“My only wish is that this may be for us the beginning of a new inner period in which, more detached from material things, we would be more conscious of Thy law and more one –pointedly consecrated to its manifestation.”

The Prayer written the next day on March 4th written for the last time in that sacred room in which she communed with The Divine beloved, and the “room charged with the Thy Presence” also has her in a “indrawn state “contemplating on the “turning page, vanishing into the dream of the past and look at the new page all full potentially of the dream of the future…”

The separation from friends, family and loved ones caused the Mother much anguish, more than that she felt their suffering invade her being in a deep way, in a powerful Prayer written on the eve of the departure in Geneva on March 6th shows us the deep love for mankind and her equally deep understanding of our human condition of pain and suffering and physical attachment and how to overcome it.

“After having suffered acutely from their suffering, I turned towards Thee, trying to heal it by infusing into it a little of that Divine Love which is the source of all peace and all happiness.”

Almost a century has passed since 1914 and we live in a totally different world - an earth where time and space has literally shrunk, a world of instant communications and “updates “every second. However, back then was another age hence this journey to India which The Mother would undertake would have been extremely difficult for the loved ones parting from her, as the journey would be hazardous and long and the separation painful, with no emails or updates informing of the safe arrival or adventures along the way. The prayer of March 6th in Geneva should be understood in this context , of the “agonizing wrench when bodies are separated” it’s a beauty showing us how we must neither run away from suffering nor should we “love and cultivate it” but must make it into a “lever powerful enough to force open the doors of the eternal consciousness…”

Finally, The Mother is on board the Japanese ship Kaga Maru, where she has many mystic experiences, the unique thing was that although she was far away from her familiar surroundings and friends and here she was sailing “on this boat which seems to me a marvellous abode of peace, a temple sailing in Thy honour”, she never for a moment lost contact with The Divine, in her words from the Prayers of March 9, 1914…..

“Those who live for Thee and in Thee may change their physical surroundings, their habits, climate, “milieu”, but everywhere they find the same atmosphere; they carry that atmosphere in themselves, in their thought constantly fixed on Thee. Everywhere they feel at home, for everywhere they are in Thy house. No longer do they marvel at the novelty, unexpectedness, picturesqueness of things and countries; for them, it is Thy Presence that is manifest in all and Thy unchangeable splendour, which never leaves them, is apparent in the least grain of sand.”

The Kaga Maru passes through Suez Canal to Colombo, a journey which would take almost a month, after that Mother would make the final leg of her Journey to Pondicherry

K. R. Iyengar in his biography of the Mother notes,

“O Lord, an ardent thanksgiving mounts from me towards Thee expressing the gratitude of this sorrowing humanity which Thou illuminest transformest and glorifiest.”

With this sense of fulfilment and deep thankfulness, on 27th March the Richards embarked at Colombo. That day they remained in Ceylon spending part of their time with a noted Buddist monk called Dharmapal. Crossing the straits at Talaimannar and reaching Dhanushkodi, the Richards booked the Boat mail on 28th March.

Mirra had known throughout the long voyage the Lord’s divine solicitude and protection, she had seen the writ of His law everywhere, and of course she had tried wholly to identify herself with His law and to embody it effortlessly and spontaneously. It is not surprising that Mirra was in a condition of serene acceptance and luminous understanding.

“From the time we started and every day more and more, in all things, we can see Thy divine intervention, everywhere Thy law is expressed.”

On 29th March, after a change at Villupuruam, the train speeded towards Pondicherry. After long before she actually met Sri Aurobindo she may well have felt his aura, just as she was to experience it six years later when her boat was nearing Pondicherry. And once there what possibilities lay hidden, what vast horizons stretched ahead of her! In the full consciousness of His sovereign Presence, she turned towards the future with an undimmed vision and with unwavering faith. A passage by Sri Aurobindo about Savitri may be apt here…..

Apparelled in her flickering-coloured robe,
She seemed burning towards the eternal realms
A bright moved torch of incense and of flame
That from the sky-roofed temple-soil of earth
A pilgrim hand lifts in an invisible shrine.

- Sudha

No comments: