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At the Feet of The Mother

Life and death (3) The Symbol of a Promise

The question is if this is all, the last limit of material evolution? Or the human body can develop either through the normal slow evolution of an accelerated spiritual revolution new possibilities of thought, new kind of thought, new kind of subjective self-experience and world experience, new ways and processes to receive vital energy and of a higher and superior kind, and as a result of this progressive evolution a new being with a new body which would be naturally tuned to new and higher states of consciousness, develop new faculties and powers, new ways of knowing and feeling and acting. Both common sense and the logic of evolution would say yes. Spiritual experience would also point us in the same direction.

It was given to Sri Aurobindo and the Mother to actually attempt and work out this possibility with their vast spiritual knowledge, power and experience. They were missioned for it so to say and their Tapasya was directed towards opening the doors of the Supramental Consciousness on one side while on the other, offering their physical body as the first pioneer towards this high divine possibility. However, they did not want to achieve the Supramental Transformation for themselves in an isolated way leaving aside the rest of humanity. It would then create a near unbridgeable gulf between the Supramental Transformation and the present mental man. Besides the Supramental Manifestation by its very nature had to be a collective one since it would imply a change in the law that presently govern earth nature and mental man. The Supramental being is not meant to be a freak with no real connection with mankind of today. This could only be done by tying them to the sample of humanity that had begun to gather around them. Sri Aurobindo became the spearhead forging towards the future with the rest linked to him. The result was that those connected with him could resist and delay his advance on which the advance of the rest depended. Or they could collaborate by reducing the burden that they had to carry. This was the reason of the delay and the eventual plunge into the Inconscient which is the seat of all resistance. Death is simply a symbol of this stark resistance in earth nature to any forward march and Godward evolution and change. It is the ultimate inertia, the Night that refuses the advent of Light, dims the aspiration throwing doubt and despair, steals hope and faith.

Sri Aurobindo’s plunge into the Inconscient was the cause of the phenomenon of what we call as his death or departure. This was not in helpless obedience to the earthly law to which we are ordinarily subject. Rather it was in defiance of it, to challenge the Night in its own home or den. Trailing him there descended the Supramental Light from above to which his body was the link and the bridge between the Divine Supermind and mental man. This descent became the symbol of a promise, an achievement that could have only gone thus far unless one left the rest of humanity behind. His plunge cleared the passage for the subsequent Supramental Manifestation on the 29th February 1956 which took place as the Mother continued the work here while Sri Aurobindo took his station in the subtle physical and worked upon the world forces from behind. A number of the Mother’s messages point towards this.

‘Lord, this morning Thou hast given me the assurance that Thou wouldst stay with us until Thy work is achieved, not only as a consciousness which guides and illumines but also as a dynamic Presence in action. In unmistakable terms Thou hast promised that all of Thyself would remain here and not leave the earth atmosphere until earth is transformed. Grant that we may be worthy of this marvellous Presence and that henceforth everything in us be concentrated on the one will to be more and more perfectly consecrated to the fulfilment of Thy sublime Work.’ 7 December 1950

‘The lack of receptivity of the earth and men is mostly responsible for the decision Sri Aurobindo has taken regarding his body. But one thing is certain: what has happened on the physical plane affects in no way the truth of his teaching. All that he has said is perfectly true and remains so. Time and the course of events will prove it abundantly.’ 8 December 1950

‘To Thee who hast been the material envelope of our Master, to Thee our infinite gratitude. Before Thee who hast done so much for us, who hast worked, struggled, suffered, hoped, endured so much, before Thee who hast willed all, attempted all, prepared, achieved all for us, before Thee we bow down and implore that we may never forget, even for a moment, all we owe to Thee.’ 9 December 1950

Indeed, nothing has changed as far as the work is concerned. If anything, it is growing more and more powerful as She affirmed in 1972:

‘(Q) I asked myself a question about Sri Aurobindo. I wanted to know at what point he had arrived when he passed away—at what point of transformation. What difference in the work, for example, is there between what you are doing now and what he was doing at that time?

He had gathered in his body a great amount of supramental force and as soon as he left… You see, he was lying on his bed, I stood by his side, and in a way altogether concrete—concrete with such a strong sensation as to make one think that it could be seen—all this supramental force which was in him passed from his body into mine. And I felt the friction of the passage. It was extraordinary—extraordinary. It was an extraordinary experience. For a long time, a long time like that (Mother indicates the passing of the Force into her body). I was standing beside his bed, and that continued.

Almost a sensation—it was a material sensation.

For a long time.

That is all I know.

(Q) But what I wanted to understand is at what point of the inner work was, for example, the cleaning of the subconscient and all that? What difference is there, say, between the work he had done at that time and the work to which you have come now? I mean to say, is the subconscient less subconscient or…

Oh! Yes, that, surely. Surely.

Well, this is the mental way of looking at things—I do not have it any more.

(Q) Yes, Mother. (Silence) The difference is perhaps a difference in the general or collective intensity of this Power, of this Force, is it not so?

There is a difference in the power for action. He himself possesses more action, more power for action, now than when in his body. Besides, it is for that that he left, because it was necessary to act in that way.

It is very concrete. His action has become very concrete. Evidently it is something which is not at all mental. It is from another region. But it is not ethereal nor… it is concrete. One could almost say that it is material.’ 20 December 1972 [CWM 11:327]

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