Guiding Light of The Month

In this immense heroic struggle, in this sublime struggle of love against hatred, of justice against injustice, of obedience to Thy supreme law against revolt, may I gradually be able to make humanity worthy of a still sublimer peace in which, all internal dissensions having ceased, the whole effort of man may be united for the attainment of a more and more perfect and integral realisation of Thy divine Will and Thy progressive ideal. - The Mother

From the Editor’s Desk (Jan 2017)

New Year Greetings to all from the Newsletter team and the Society! A beginning is always welcome, and even more so, a new beginning. Inevitably, anyone who has put oneself on the path of inner progress is greeted by new beginnings every now and then. Let us mark this special New Year of 2017 collectively as a year of new beginnings for everyone. The first month of this year continues to contemplate on our well-being and particularly, on the Vital Well-Being, which is a direct result of the mastering of the vital energies of the being. In the previous few issues, we looked at the nature of the vital being and some of the challenges it poses us. 

How can the vital energy be put at the service of the aspiring being surging towards a life divine? It is important to know that the vital being has “that dynamic energy which makes no difficulty too difficult for it; but it must be on the right side.” Now, what is this ‘right side’? We can surmise that being on the wrong side amounts to it using its energy to gain a satisfaction over its desires, to gain some fruits out of its works and when denied, withdrawing into a depression and sullen inaction or wrong action. Sri Aurobindo says that “interfered with by the attractions and repulsions, the acceptances and refusals, the satisfactions and dissatisfactions, the capacities and incapacities of the life-energy in the body it is, … limited in its scope and, secondly, forced in these limits to associate itself with all these discords of the life in Matter. It becomes an instrument for pleasure and pain instead of for delight of existence.” However, the collaborating vital of the seeker, the aspirant is quite of another nature. Sri Aurobindo writes, “The proper function of the life-energy is to do what it is bidden by the divine principle in us, to reach to and enjoy what is given to it by that indwelling Divine and not to desire at all.” When the vital is consecrated to the Divine, then, “…all human problems would move harmoniously to their right solution.” 

Where do we stand in light of this? What can we do to help ourselves, to will that the vital, as far as possible, be in a state of well-being, and bring us smoothly on the path of inner discovery and the ultimate meaning and purpose of our lives? The Mother offers two ways in preparing it and making it ready to collaborate with the divine will: “The first concerns the development and use of the sense organs. The second the progressing awareness and control of the character, culminating in its transformation.” 

The sense organs of sight, smell, taste, hearing and touch stand at the doorsteps of the vital, opening to it vast vistas of experiences. Instead of considering these only as needed for our normal day-to-day existence, one can take upon one the task of developing them further. Here is an interesting prospect that The Mother puts before us: “…  the ability to widen the physical consciousness, project it out of oneself so as to concentrate it on a given point and thus obtain sight, hearing, smell, taste and even touch at a distance.” Having perfected the sense organs to these magnitudes, there is then the call to offer to these only the highest, the subtlest and the most “beautiful and harmonious, simple, healthy and pure” stimulus. This asks for the ability of discrimination, ‘viveka’ and the necessity of exercising a conscious choice. Next, we are invited to be vigilant about our nature, catching hold, at each instance, what needs to be weeded out and what needs to be planted afresh and what needs to be nurtured, leading to a transformation of the nature. In all these, a constant aspiration and a calling of the Grace for help and sustenance must take a permanent place in the consciousness of the aspiring soul.  Then will the vital well-being be.

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