Guiding Light of The Month

Grant, O Divine Teacher, that we may know and accomplish our mission upon earth better and better, more and more, that we may make full use of all the energies that are in us, and Thy sovereign Presence become manifest ever more perfectly in the silent depths of our soul, in all our thoughts, all our feelings, all our actions. - The Mother

A camp of God is pitched in human time


Leaving the three Madonnas behind, Savitri presses on her quest to the "soul's mystic cave" and first steps into "a night of God" where the familiar powers of the world-knowledge, wisdom, truth—are held in a screened solution in the reigning holy hush and dark:

       In a simple purity of emptiness
       Her mind knelt down before the unknowable.
      All was abolished save her naked self
      And the prostrate yearning of her surrendered heart:

It is somewhat like the mixing and merging of a drop with the ocean,

      A night of person in a bare outline
      Crossing a fathomless impersonal Night,... 
Presently this general immobility gives place to a new stir of life, the blossoming of "a rose of splendour on a tree of dreams"; the "night of God" changes to day, the air is sweet, the sky is lustrous, and the "mystic cavern... of her secret soul" stands revealed:

      And a holy stillness held that voiceless space.
      An awful dimness wrapped the great rock-doors
      Carved in the massive stone of Matter's trance.

Two golden serpents round the lintel, an eagle with massive wings above, doves at the cornices; inside the court, as in a South Indian temple, sculptured gods snapping moments in the cosmic play; on the walls, pictures conveying the "hieratic message of the climbing planes": the whole a parable of the "extension of the self of God/... And his passion and his birth and life and death/And his return to immortality".297 Savitri seizes the meaning of it all, not through ratiocination, but by her soul's identity with each symbol which is also an order of reality:

      A sealed identity within her woke;
      She knew herself the Beloved of the Supreme:...

She is Mother, Brahma's word, Shiva's spouse, Krishna's Radha; and, indeed, she is the Adorer and Adored self-lost and one". Savitri now comes to the last chamber where she espies the formless fount of her "straying force", and passing beyond it through a tunnel to a house of flame and light, there she meets her secret soul:

      Here in this chamber of flame and light they met;
      They looked upon each other, knew themselves,
      The secret deity and its human part,
      The calm immortal and the struggling soul.
      Then with a magic transformation's speed
      They rushed into each other and grew one.

The long night's journey into day is over; Savitri has explored the inner countries of the spirit, much as a modern visitor to one of the big temples in South India might explore concentric courts, the prākārās, the numerous shrines within, the statues of the minor gods and goddesses and the bhaktas and the god-intoxicated, the paintings on the walls and the sculptured pillars and walls reproducing scenes from epic and purana, the cosmic play and the tāndav dance, and moving from sacred enclosure to another enclosure, always moving within, observing the vāhanās, being enraptured by the ritual, the swaying of the lights and the chanting of hymns, dazzled by the bejewelled gold-shaped outer manifestations of the deity and his consort, and penetrating at long last to the ultimate sanctum, the innermost home of the deity, and receiving the ineffable impact of the 'mystical tremendum', the blaze of the total truth that blinds, the shower of the Grace that cleanses; Savitri has at last seen and grown into her secret Soul. She is now back in the world of man, the same yet different; she is filled with the glory and power of God, and all in her have undergone a "high celestial change"; and henceforth her every act will be "an act of god". Head, brows, throat, heart, navel, all coiled petals of the unfolding bud of this lotus flame have received the impress of new divinity, and in the apparently human mould of Savitri "a first perfection's stage is reached at last":

There is won a new proximity to the skies,
A first betrothal of the Earth to Heaven,
A deep concordat between Truth and Life:
A camp of God is pitched in human time.

(An excerpt from “Sri Aurobindo’s Savitri – A study of the cosmic epic”, Dr. Premanandakumar, Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust, Puducherry)

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