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At the Feet of The Mother

Gratitude (10/18) Matrix of the New Time

These bodies summed the drift of numberless births,
And the spirit to the spirit was the same.
Amazed by a joy for which they had waited long,
The lovers met upon their different paths,
Travellers across the limitless plains of Time
Together drawn from fate-led journeyings
In the self-closed solitude of their human past,
To a swift rapturous dream of future joy
And the unexpected present of these eyes.
By the revealing greatness of a look,
Form-smitten the spirit’s memory woke in sense.
The mist was torn that lay between two lives;
Her heart unveiled and his to find her turned;
Attracted as in heaven star by star,
They wondered at each other and rejoiced
And wove affinity in a silent gaze.
A moment passed that was eternity’s ray,
An hour began, the matrix of new Time. [Savitri: 399]

They met on the 29th March 1914 when time and circumstance conspired to open the doors of destiny. The veil was rent almost instantaneously and the recognition followed. A new matrix of time had begun. Their meeting marked it new turning point in the life and yoga of Sri Aurobindo. Soon after they met the Mother started her work of New Creation. But the world was far from ready. Its mind was entrenched in various isms and belief systems. Its soul was divided between the pursuit of this world or the other. A post mortem salvation was its highest scope. The high effort of the Vedas was lost and its key lay hidden in some obscure depths of spiritual experience. The philologists were trying to crack the code of the Vedic lore by the outer meaning of words whereas the secret lay in the root sounds and the inner experience of the seers that alone could reveal the real meaning of the mantra. On the one hand spiritual thought had been taking an increasingly other-worldly flight, on the other hand a materialistic science had almost shut God out of this world and relegated Him to some spot or corner of the brain. A fresh original and reconciling thought was needed, a new synthesis that could fulfill man’s dream of terrestrial perfection. With all the advancement of science the future of mankind looked bleak. It is at this time that the Arya was started by Sri Aurobindo at the behest of the Mother. A New Word began to be released into the earth atmosphere, the seeds of a New Creation were being sown in the mind of man through the Arya. The magic had begun, the magic of the dawn emerging out of the thick of night.

But while the magic Word was on its way and the flute of the New Creation was just beginning to be heard the world was drowned in the din and noise of the battle. One result of the war was that the Mother had to return back to France immediately after her 37th birthday. She and her husband sailed away from India. Her first arrival was marked by the experience of Sri Aurobindo’s aura, his light pervading miles from afar. As the obverse side of this experience her sailing away was accompanied by a state of harsh solitude, the seige of Night over the fortress of Light. The battle had begun not only outside but within. A swarm of vital asuric forces had swooped upon earth to push back hope and delay the advent of Light. Sri Aurobindo however continued to pour the New Light through the pages of the Arya. In fact as if to defeat the forces of darkness forever in this battle of the Ages he started releasing the mantra of the new age through a new undertaking, the epic poem Savitri. Though Sri Aurobindo had initiated the poem while in Baroda itself, the first serious attempt started in 1916. The mantric poem that Sri Aurobindo would later regard as his most important work and which the Mother would confirm as the Mantra of transformation would eventually grow into a most magnificent and powerful lyric of love ever written. That however had to wait until the Mother’s return and taking charge of the disciples who were naturally drawn towards Sri Aurobindo as bees are to a fragrant flower. Meanwhile the world was in turmoil in the hollow of the Asura’s grip. The Mother had her role to play in the war as she tended the sick and the wounded returning from the battlefield.

The Mother had to leave Pondicherry due to the war and Sri Aurobindo had to continue the journal single-handedly. Some of these writings have been hence brought out in the form of books like The Life Divine, The Synthesis of Yoga, Essays on the Gita, The Upanishads, The Secret of the Veda, The Future Poetry, The Human Cycle, The Ideal of Human Unity and War and Self-Determination. The central theme in these writings is the vision of a spiritual evolution of humanity by an ascent beyond the mind and a progressive transformation of the human race by the growing influence and pressure of the Supramental Consciousness. Through these works, Sri Aurobindo not only gave the New Vision a body appropriate to the modern times and revealed its metaphysical basis but also gave to earth and humanity a whole path of yoga through which man can arrive here and now rather than in some distant future, this greater destiny that awaits him. He wrote with the seal of finality:

Man cannot be final, he is a transitional being. This is very clear from the incompleteness and imperfection of all his powers of consciousness; he can only arrive at some limited form of temporary and unstable perfection by much labour and struggle; and yet the search for perfection is ingrained in his nature. There is something that he is not yet which he has to be; he is reaching always towards the something yet unrealised; his whole life and nature is a preparation, an endeavour of Nature towards what is beyond him.

The human consciousness is limited in every direction; it does not know itself, it does not know the world around it, it does not know the origin and meaning and use of its existence. But it strives always to know, to find the truth of its being, the right use of its life, the end towards which Nature in him is tending; this it does with a seeking and blundering movement; man’s consciousness is an ignorance struggling towards knowledge; it is a weakness training itself for power; it is a thing of pleasure and suffering that tries to lay hands on the true delight of existence. [CWSA 12:265-266]


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