Guiding Light of The Month

All is light, all is love, ignorance and egoism are but vain phantoms, they can be dissolved. And over all things spreads Thy sovereign peace, Thy fecund calmness. - The Mother

Editorial

Light, its quality and intensity has always been used to describe states of the mind-consciousness, just as heat and warmth have been used to describe states of consciousness in the heart region. What is the nature of this Light in the ordinary mind, higher mind, illumined mind and mind of intuition? In moments of quietness, when we retract our feelers that reach outwards and consent to withdraw to the background and watch the movements within, we perceive something of the mind, which Sri Aurobindo describes as “…a faculty for the seeking of knowledge, for expressing…and for using it towards certain capacities of action. Even when it finds, it does not possess, it only keeps a fund of current coin of Truth – not Truth itself – in the bank of Memory to draw upon according to its needs. For mind is that which does not know, which tries to know and which never knows except as in a glass darkly.” In terms of Light, the ordinary mind lacks it or rather, appears ill-lit. Taking a minute to dwell in our ordinary mind, watching the thoughts clashing pell-mell in an ill-lit alleyway, at once noisy and disorderly, confirms this. How are the higher rungs of mind lit? If the mind is an ill-lit alleyway, sometimes lit with false lightings that flicker off as soon as they appear, or which progressively dim away into darkness, the higher mind is described as “… not illumined by any of the more intense upper lights but as if in a large strong and clear daylight…” In the higher mind, natural daylight begins to make its presence felt, but it is still not that something more that is possible, that we are promised. It is not the sunlight itself.

Then comes the description of the illumined mind with regards to the light that thus illumines it: “Here the clarity of the spiritual intelligence, its tranquil intense lustre, a splendour and illumination of the Spirit: a play of lightings of spiritual truth and power breaks from above into the consciousness …”

On Intuition, is written “… intuition leaps out like a spark of lightning-flash..” with further illustration from ‘Savitri’:

And like a sky-flare showing all the ground A swift intuitive discernment shone.

Intuition is portrayed as quick flashes of light, the intensity of which can illumine all the ground. There is a suggestion that it comes after the clouds come together and a storm is brewing. One strike and all is seen, is what comes to the mind. Further to this, Sri Aurobindo writes, “It acts in a self-light of the truth which does not depend upon the torch-flares of the sense-mind and its limited uncertain percepts; … it is a kind of truth-vision, truth-hearing, truth-memory, direct truth-discernment.”

What is the hope for us to be able to climb from rung to rung and reach the lightning flashes of intuition, or rather to have a sky prepared for their visitations? Sri Aurobindo gives us some very encouraging insights, which places the beginning as the “widening into the inner mind”, to grow beyond living in our surface mind into an inner mind which is able to put us in direct communion with the universal forces and have possible a direct action on our limited being and widen it into a higher existence.

As with all aspects of this Yoga, this calls for self-work, an inner scrutiny and a calling of Higher Forces which alone can help.

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