March 19th – Study of Secrets of the Veda:
A study of the first 3 verses of Mandala 1, Sukta 4 was taken up, facilitated by Sri Krishnamurthy.
In this Sukta, the Rishis Vishwamitra and Madhuchchandas invoke the ‘Master of luminous mind Indra ’ for increase of ‘Light’. Sri Aurobindo has described Indra as follows:
He comes down into our world as the ‘Hero - with his shining horses ’
§ Slays darkness and division with his lightnings
§ Pours down the life-giving heavenly waters
§ Finds in the trace of the hound, intuition, the lost or hidden illumination
§ Makes the Sun of truth mount high in the heaven of our mental plane
The actions of Indra on the seekers are mainly divided into 3 categories:
1st task –This step is imaged as the birth of the God Indra in man that includes preparation and building up of subtle bodies in man, which can absorb and sustain the knowledge imparted.
2nd task – Help humans towards the all sided perfection - that is perfection in the physical, vital and mental realms, as also in interpersonal relations.
3rd task: - Offer protection for individuals from the hostile forces. Indra battles the demonic forces led by Vritra – the concealer or tearer.
In verse 1, the image created is that of a cow (symbolically representing ‘Light or Ray of Light’ giving abundantly its yield to the one who milks the herds. The seeker being the one who milks and Indra the milched - Cow. Also Indra is shown to represent enlightened intelligence, fashioning the perfect forms of thought.
In verse 2, the seeker earnestly invokes Indra to come and accept the Soma drink that is just pressed out. Indra in turn gets nourished by ‘the excess of delight’ making him shower the rays of Truth Consciousness on the seeker.
In verse 3, the stress is upon right thought and not on the emotions. It is necessary, however, that the progress in right thinking should commence in the field of consciousness already attained. There must not be just flashes and dazzling manifestations. Also the rishis here earnestly request Indra not to show beyond what they can comprehend at the current consciousness level they have achieved.
March 26th – Savitri, An unending journey:
Book 2, The Traveller of the Worlds, Canto 4, The Kingdoms of the little life
Picture 1: The Life-Force seeks for the Joy ineffable. But she is enclosed in the limited, unlit edifice of the material form and though she derives a little delight from the indwelling spirit at the core, she yields in the process to the many obscure and stunted elements of material nature. Life is obliged to propitiate the little gods of Matter for establishing and organising herself in the material field.
This sacrifice on the part of Life to the little gods of the material kingdom, however, is endless and not fruitful. Life may attempt to change the pattern of the constitution of material form but she fails to evoke a seconding response from Matter.
Picture 2: This is the state of Life in her first beginnings in the material world. She is still an infant in her formation and only partially self-aware, unsure of her steps in her slow movement upwards from the soil of Matter. Far away from her native glories, she is like a deserted and forlorn child. From the conditions of obscurity, struggle and pain in which she is, she makes her way through dense, unclear passages feeling out for states of light, power and joy.
Picture 3: But this appearance does not deceive Aswapathy’s sight. His awakened eye pierces through it and perceives that there is a definite purpose underlying the apparently meaningless movement. Aswapathy is fully aware of his mission. He awaits a significant revelation of the glory of God and though the world in which he now finds himself is so strange, so aimless in appearance, he cites God’s purpose in the workings presented before his eye.
Picture 4: This original failure of the will-to-be, of the will-to-delight to overcome the hold of decay and death has become ingrained as a habit and it pursues as an evil shadow all subsequent developments of the effort of life to affirm and organise herself. Even if the hold is loosened in the more developed evolutes of life, it is there firm on the constituting cells of the body that the life inhabits and the cells give way, betraying life.
This life-impulse to affirm and aggrandise itself, this desire to possess and enjoy, is the motive force that propels the world-movement from the very beginning. It has been at once the activating motor as also the tether which holds back the evolving being from a wider and a loftier flight. For even with the advent of thought and reason in the mind, even with the effective articulation of the spirit, the old, primitive urge of life-desire continues and forms the mainspring of life’s activities.
Picture 5: When in the course of its devolution the manifesting Spirit arrived at the nadir of its downward plunge and lost itself in its exclusive concentration, all became a Void. There was only darkness, a vast negation, a veritable Night. And so it would have remained but for the purposive descent of the Conscious Being of Satchidananda into this dark Void, sacrificing itself in its threefold nature of Truth-existence, Consciousness Force and Bliss which underwent a change into its opposite in the conditions of the fall. Because of this entry and presence of the Conscious Being—however masked—it has been possible for light to emerge out of darkness, consciousness out of nescience.
Picture 6: Its hard and heavy romp of self-born twins. As Life builds itself in the material world, there starts a game of hide-and-seek between the Soul which is yet hidden and Nature which reveals herself only partly. It is a game played in the half-light of a slow, emerging consciousness, a play of tentative grasping and escapes. Even with the advent of the mind, the game continues, perhaps even more vigorously: Soul and Nature—the inseparable Two, born with the Creation—play to find and possess each other through all phases of attraction and repulsion, hope and fear.
Picture 7: Life goes on to assume huge forms, massive in strength, but puny in brain, like the mastodon. She evolves even the human form though tiny in size at first. These humans are primitive in their development, they let their own life-movement—short-ranged as it is—drift where it will but impose their life-will on the rest of the earth. And this they are able to do because they possess brains more developed than those of other creatures, however physically huge and strong they may be.
Picture 8: Even men at this stage are animals in all but in form. Excepting in their form which is human, in everything else they are like the other creatures of the animal world. Their life is filled with the passion of the general movement; they are not at all self-aware and it does not occur to them to know who they are or why they live. Their one object of exertion III life is to draw as much enjoyment as can be derived from the objects and movements of Nature. The body is all that matters and their whole life is occupied with meeting its demands for satisfaction; they do not look beyond it. They are satisfied with the normal routine of living in the physical body—breathing, feeling, sensing, and acting. They are completely identified with the body which is but the outer form of the indwelling soul.
Picture 9: This release of the mind-principle into overt action from below is gradual. The power of this emerging mind is at first obscure and vaguely perceptible amidst the densities of Matter and the engulfing turgidities of life.
It is like a thin current constantly exposed to the driving and submerging flow of the waters of life. But it survives and slowly formulates itself into fleeting sensations and palpable feelings. Formation into thinking activity comes much later.
The slender current of the early mind runs through the mass of unconsciousness covering the material earth, through the surface movements of agitation thrown up by the upsurge of consciousness and forces its way across the narrow channels open to it. It gathers plentiful experience on its move and assimilates it.
Picture 10: Life here, on this plane, is a slender flame of light that is born and holds itself in a mass of darkness, death and nescience. She is not conscious, not aware of her origin or the direction of her course. There is still the obscuring mist of nescience all around.
Source: collected Works of Sri Aurobindo.
April 2nd – Reading from AIM magazine:
Read a few passages from March 2017 issue of AIM, The Value of Money
These passages are taken from the Collected Works of the Mother.
Mother gives very detailed aspects of Money. Money is among the forces that have a great hold over human nature.
Right now Money power belongs to the vital and material world which is under Asuric forces. What must be done is to re-conquer it from Asuric forces and put them at the disposal of the Divine for His work of transformation.
Physical manifestation of Money is just a convention. There were times when shells and fish hooks were exchanged for goods! The more of the same was considered to be rich. Now it is era of Paper Money. Whatever form the Money exists there is a force behind it. Instead of self-aggrandisement, it has to be used for the welfare of the world.
Attachment to money can exists even after death for example a miser’s passion for his treasure can be so powerful that even when his vital is dissolved it gathers some elements and safe guards its treasure that anyone trying to retrieve the treasure are befallen with tragic ends.
Money is not meant to make money, money is meant to make the earth ready for the advent of the new creation. - The Mother
April 9th - Q & A from Mother’s Complete Works Volume 8 Page no 234:
The passage talks about the 3 parts to the act of Divine Love and Worship, which are as follows:
- A practical worship of the Divine
- A symbol of worship ” expressing some vision and seeking or some relation to the Divine”
- An inner adoration and longing for oneness, or feeling of oneness in the heart and soul and spirit.
The aspirant did not understand the first two parts clearly and Mother gives the following explanation:
1. The first is purely material (physical acts) for example lighting the incense, arranging the offerings, looking after a temple.
2. The second is a mental consecration which makes the act that is performed a symbol. As an example the lighting of the incense is symbolic of the aspiration burning in the body or an act of self-giving in a dissolution.
3. The final part is the aspiration for the union with the Divine. It is a means of drawing closer to the Divine ad making the person fir to unit with the Divine.
Mother goes on to add that for the act to be complete, these three things mentioned above must be there, that is something purely material, something mental, and something psychic.