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

August – September Sunday Activities at the Centre - A glimpse

August 20th – Savitri with Mother’s Voice and Music animating Huta Paintings

We tried a novel method this month taking inspiration from the Mother’s explanation of ‘Self-dynamising Meditation’ we read on the August 13th. This was on Pages 88-89 randomly chosen by Krishnamurthy uncle from the Mother Q&A book. Please refer to our August Newsletter for the summary of this discussion.

“… Everyone has his own mode of meditation. But if one wants the meditation to be dynamic, one must have an aspiration for progress and the meditation must be done to help and fulfil this aspiration for progress. Then it becomes dynamic” Mother Q&A 1956

Our deeper view of the painting also helped us to relate to the chapters two and three of Life Divine on the two negations, namely ‘The Materialist Denial’ and ‘The Refusal of the Ascetic’. We also observed the easier golden pathway of Psychic Being’s consciousness-force built for our accelerated progress.

After the horizontal exploration of the Picture 4, we looked at the preceding three pictures. Mother has carefully chosen these passages with Picture 1 representing the Transcendental view, Picture 2 the Cosmic View, Picture 3 the showering of love to all by Savitri, the Divine Flame incarnate, showing us the easier path for accelerated progress and the Picture 4 depicting our current confused state of affairs – “Hugging the bonds close of which they most complained, Murmured at a yoke they would have wept to lose”. It was a profound eye opening experience.

We were also able to relate the Transcendental View (Picture 1) to the cosmos seed referred to in Book 3 on Divine Mother, Canto 3, Picture 1:

The great world-rhythms were heart-beats of one Soul,
To feel was a flame-discovery of God,
All mind was a single harp of many strings,
All life a song of many meeting lives;
For worlds were many, but the Self was one.
This knowledge now was made a cosmos’ seed:
This seed was cased in the safety of the Light,
It needed not a sheath of Ignorance

Kiran Sule displayed his usual eloquence by recalling related passages from Book 1 Canto 2 “The Issue” and Canto 4 “The Secret Knowledge” enhancing our understanding.

Going deeper inside from the limiting surface view, we are able to appreciate the subtle and causal links as elaborated above; It was a divine delight to feel the flame discovery – the very topic Jared stared with; it is not a coincidence but divine grace that brought to our eyes Mother’s answer to our central idea of ‘self-dynamising meditation’ though it seemed to be by chance; similarly, we were guided into ‘the heart of the flame of Savitri’ as well – into the ‘Growth of the Flame’ canto - again the very topic we were exploring. This way we can elaborate on the divine connections between the other seemingly random events of the month. 
Finally, we dwelt on the most important aspect of ‘progress and transformation’ Mother has emphasized as the core of self-dynamising meditation – our life journey is a Yoga; we need not leave everything to the mercy of circumstances, fate and necessity; in the book ‘On Education’, Mother guides us on

  • Concentration,
  • Broadening our outlook,
  • Appreciating even views contrary to our own,
  • Refining as well as aligning our aspirations to a central idea
  • Utilizing our experiences to guide the journey supporting our central ideas
  • Silencing our mind to overcome the limitations of our dividing mind

The choices visible to us, our decisions and our actions make up our life journey. Often we are limited and unduly influenced by our physical, vital and mental egos. Mother reminds us that our aspirations and supporting attitudes are the top two influencers we need to groom with care. Instead of attitudes driving our life journey based on chance, circumstances and fate, we can consciously utilize attitudes as valuable ‘life force directing switches’ for our progress and transformation. The stronger our aspirations, the better we will be able to move away from our current state of being driven by our ignorant ‘forces of Becoming’ - thus enabling our soul force to take charge of our life journey – not through nirvana but through our ‘Being of Becoming’ (Psychic Being). Let us fondly recall the deep messages in the Mother’s dramas ‘The Great Secret’ and ‘Towards the Future’ and delight on the experience that these are what we have tried to review through our own life experiences during this session. It is truly Divine Grace that this session has served us so well as an important learning exercise to apply to our life journey – going deeper inside and viewing our life events beyond the surface with a supportive dynamic attitude for our progress and transformation.

August 27th – Rig Veda and Savitri: Usha – The Dawn: After exploring Agni for two weeks, we moved on to Usha, The Dawn, taking up Rig Veda Mandala 1, Sukta 113 along with Savitri, Book 1, Canto 1, “The Symbol of Dawn’. Surface view of dawn blinds us to the involved hidden secrets. Subtle view reveals Usha as referring to both the eternal transcendental light reaching us as well as the involved light within striving to come out of the night. Going still deeper, Usha also carries with her the message and the seed right from the all-encompassing Word OM. These three images of the Word, Transcendental Light with Seed and the involved seed within the night are highlighted by the following three passages:
pra̱śa̱sti̱kṛdbrahma̍ṇe no̱ vyu1̱̍[o]cchā no̱ jane̍ janaya viśvavāre || Rig Veda 1.113.19 Approving us, shine on us the Word; cherished by all, may we be born among the God-loving perfect persons – Sri Aurobindo’s translation
For worlds were many, but the Self was one.
This knowledge now was made a cosmos’ seed:
This seed was cased in the safety of the Light,
It needed not a sheath of Ignorance.

Book3, Canto 3: The House of the Spirit and New Creation

A spirit that is a flame of God abides,
A fiery portion of the Wonderful,
Artist of his own beauty and delight,
Immortal in our mortal poverty.
This sculptor of the forms of the Infinite,
This screened unrecognised Inhabitant,
Initiate of his own veiled mysteries,
Hides in a small dumb seed his cosmic thought.

Book1, Canto 3: The Yoga of the Soul’s Release
Usha takes on various forms as the Mother, Daughter of the Sun, Sister, parent of the Sun, recurring dawns and the eternal dawn. She is also the brilliant guide for happy truths impelling all living beings to progress towards perfection. Usha is in fact Savitri herself. Below is the link to the scintillating explanation given by Mother for ‘The Symbol of Dawn’ canto. Meditating on this simply melts away our understanding difficulties and paves way for deeper revelations.
Jared presented us with eleven instances of similarities between Usha in Rig Veda and The Symbol of Dawn. Below are some references to the message and seed in Savitri, Book 1 Canto 1: ‘The Symbol of Dawn’.
A glamour from unreached transcendences
Iridescent with the glory of the Unseen,
A message from the unknown immortal Light
Ablaze upon creation’s quivering edge,
Dawn built her aura of magnificent hues

And buried its seed of grandeur in the hours.

Arrived from the other side of boundlessness
An eye of deity pierced through the dumb deeps;
A scout in a reconnaissance from the sun,

Almost that day the epiphany was disclosed
Of which our thoughts and hopes are signal flares,
A lonely splendour from the invisible goal
Almost was flung on the opaque Inane.
Once more a tread perturbed the vacant Vasts;
Infinity’s centre, a Face of rapturous calm
Parted the eternal lids that open heaven;
A Form from far beatitudes seemed to near.
Ambassadress twixt eternity and change,
The omniscient Goddess leaned across the breadths
That wrap the fated journeyings of the stars
And saw the spaces ready for her feet.

September 10th and 17th – Rig Veda: The Doctrine of the Mystics

After exploring the close links of Agni and Usha in Rig Veda and Savitri, we moved on to tasting Sri Aurobindo’s Doctrine of the Mystics. In fact, we had already provided a link to this in our July News Letter encouraging everyone to enjoy the taste of Sri Aurobindo’s refreshing eye opener on the Vedas.

“The Veda possesses the high spiritual substance of the Upanishads, but lacks their phraseology; it is an inspired knowledge as yet insufficiently equipped with intellectual and philosophical terms. We find a language of poets and illuminates to whom all experience is real, vivid, sensible, even concrete, not yet of thinkers and systematisers to whom the realities of the mind and soul have become abstractions. Yet a system, a doctrine there is; but its structure is supple, its terms are concrete, the cast of its thought is practical and experimental, but in the accomplished type of an old and sure experience, not of one that is crude and uncertain because yet in the making.

Here we have the ancient psychological science and the art of spiritual living of which the Upanishads are the philosophical outcome and modification and Vedanta, Sankhya and Yoga the late intellectual result and logical dogma. But like all life, like all science that is still vital, it is free from the armoured rigidities of the reasoning intellect; in spite of its established symbols and sacred formulae it is still large, free, flexible, fluid, supple and subtle. It has the movement of life and the large breath of the soul. And while the later philosophies are books of Knowledge and make liberation the one supreme good, the Veda is a Book of Works and the hope for which it spurns our present bonds and littleness is perfection, self-achievement, immortality.

The doctrine of the Mystics recognises an Unknowable, Timeless and Unnameable behind and above all things and not sizable by the studious pursuit of the mind. Impersonally, it is That, the One Existence; to the pursuit of our personality it reveals itself out of the secrecy of things as the God or Deva, -- nameless though he has many names, immeasurable and beyond description, though he holds in himself all description of name and knowledge and all measures of form and substance, force and activity.

The Deva or Godhead is both the original cause and the final result. Divine Existent, builder of the worlds, lord and begetter of all things, Male and Female, Being and Consciousness, Father and Mother of the Worlds and their inhabitants, he is also their Son and ours: for he is the Divine Child born into the Worlds who manifests himself in the growth of the creature.

The soul of man soars as the Bird, the Hansa, past the shining firmaments of physical and mental consciousness, climbs as the traveller and fighter beyond earth of body and heaven of mind by the ascending path of the Truth to find this Godhead waiting for us, leaning down to us from the secrecy of the highest supreme where it is seated in the triple divine Principle and the source of the Beatitude. The Deva is indeed, whether attracting and exalted there or here helpful to us in the person of the greater Gods, always the Friend and Lover of man, the pastoral Master of the Herds who gives us the sweet milk and the clarified butter from the udder of the shining Cow of the infinitude. He is the source and outpourer of the ambrosial Wine of divine delight and we drink it drawn from the sevenfold waters of existence or pressed out from the luminous plant on the hill of being and uplifted by its raptures we become immortal. Such are some of the images of this ancient mystic adoration.” Sri Aurobindo

Sri Aurobindo goes on to describe in vivid details the significance of the symbols of Rig Veda, involution, evolution and the interleaved/interacting triplicities; our Mother Earth is specially gifted but also burdened with the dark forces; Man has a special role to play through the triple transformation. Below is a partial extract in Sri Aurobindo’s words:

“This human ascension is possible because every being really holds in himself all that his outward vision perceives as if external to him. We have subjective faculties hidden in us which correspond to all the tiers and strata of the objective cosmic system and these forms for us so many planes of our possible existence. This material life and our narrowly limited consciousness of the physical world are far from being the sole experience permitted to man, -- be he a thousand times the Son of Earth. If maternal Earth bore him and retains him in her arms, yet is Heaven also one of his parents and has a claim on his being. It is open to him to become awake to profounder depths and higher heights within and such awakening is his intended progress.

 And as he mounts thus to higher and ever higher planes of himself, new worlds open to his life and his vision and become the field of his experience and the home of his spirit. He lives in contact and union with their powers and godheads and remoulds himself in their image. Each ascent is thus a new birth of the soul, and the Veda calls the worlds ``births'' as well as seats and dwelling-places.

And this is no easy or peaceful march; it is for long seasons a fierce and relentless battle. The seeker must be a tireless toiler and traveller and a stern warrior, he must force open and storm and sack city after city, win kingdom after kingdom, overthrow and tread down ruthlessly enemy after enemy. His whole progress is a warring of Gods and Titans, Gods and Giants, Indra and the Python, Aryan and Dasyu. Aryan adversaries even he has to face in the open field; for old friends and helpers turn into enemies.

The Vedic imagery is easy to understand when once we have the key, but it must not be mistaken for mere imagery. The Gods are not simply poetical personifications of abstract ideas or of psychological and physical functions of Nature.

 To the Vedic seers they are living realities; the vicissitudes of the human soul represent a cosmic struggle not merely of principles and tendencies but of the cosmic Powers which support and embody them. These are the Gods and the Demons. On the world-stage and in the individual soul the same real drama with the same personages is enacted.

All this action and struggle and ascension is supported by Heaven our Father and Earth our Mother, Parents of the Gods, who sustain respectively the purely mental and psychic and the physical consciousness.

Our earth shaped out of the dark inconscient ocean of existence lifts its high formations and ascending peaks heavenward; heaven of mind has its own formations, clouds that give out their lightnings and their waters of life; the streams of the clarity and the honey ascend out of the subconscient ocean below and seek the superconscient ocean above; and from above that ocean sends downward its rivers of the light and truth and bliss even into our physical being.

Thus in images of physical Nature the Vedic poets sing the hymn of our spiritual ascension.

The soul of man is a world full of beings, a kingdom in which armies clash to help or hinder a supreme conquest, a house where the gods are our guests and which the demons strive to possess; the fullness of its energies and wideness of its being make a seat of sacrifice spread, arranged and purified for a celestial session.

Such are some of the principal images of the Veda and a very brief and insufficient outline of the teaching of the Forefathers. So understood the Rig Veda ceases to be an obscure, confused and barbarous hymnal; it becomes the high-aspiring Song of Humanity; its chants are episodes of the lyrical epic of the soul in its immortal ascension.

This at least; what more there may be in the Veda of ancient science, lost knowledge, old psycho-physical tradition remains yet to be discovered”
- Ramadoss

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