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At the Feet of The Mother

The Greatness of the Great 2: Life of a Spiritual Person

If this is true of a human being who has risen above the ordinary pitch of our humanity, the Vibhūtis as they are called in India, it is much more so with the life of an Avatara or even of a great Master or yogi. However simple their outward actions may look they emerge from a much deeper fount than we can normally access. Therefore to judge them by our petty human standards is actually blasphemous, not because of any religious injunction or dogma but simply because it is at once superfluous and misleading.  Even his flaws, whether real or apparent, stem from causes that are different from what ordinarily one is susceptible to. That is why the advice of the wise ones has always been to approach the life of a sage, seer, yogi, even of a vibhuti, but most of all of an Avatara with all humility and caution. As Sri Aurobindo remarked when approached by an erstwhile disciple to write his biography:

First of all what matters in a spiritual man’s life is not what he did or what he was outside to the view of the men of his time (that is what historicity or biography comes to, does it not?) but what he was and did within; it is only that that gives any value to his outer life at all. It is the inner life that gives to the outer any power it may have, and the inner life of a spiritual man is something vast and full and, at least in the great figures, so crowded and teeming with significant things that no biographer or historian could ever hope to seize it all or tell it. [CWSA 35: 6]

The Mother observed:

Who can understand Sri Aurobindo? He is as vast as the universe and his teaching is infinite…   The only way to come a little close to him is to love him sincerely and give oneself unreservedly to his work. Thus, each one does his best and contributes as much as he can to that transformation of the world which Sri Aurobindo has predicted. [CWM 12: 397]

These are not hyperbolic statements but self evident truths to anyone who has ever lived a deeper inner life. They appear as hyperbolic and hagigraphy only to a person who knows nothing beyond his little surface life and its petty narrow motives. It speaks more about the shallowness of the person than the depth and profundity of his subject.  As Sri Ramakrishna beautifully observed, though in the context of measuring the Divine by the human mind that it is like the salt doll that tries to measure the ocean depths. It is equally true when we try to fathom the heart of those who embody the ocean of the superconscient Light. Sri Aurobindo beautifully reveals in a partly autobiographical poem ‘Seer deep-hearted’ [CWSA 2: 677]:

Seer deep-hearted, divine king of the secrecies,
Occult fountain of love sprung from the heart of God,
Ways thou knewest no feet ever in Time had trod.
Words leaped flashing, the flame-billows of wisdom’s seas.
Vast thy soul was a tide washing the coasts of heaven.
Thoughts broke burning and bare crossing the human night,
White star-scripts of the gods born from the book of Light
Page by page to the dim children of earth were given. 

This fact has now been forgotten and one has a tendency to take up certain events, often without the background and the context, the applying our own standards dissect and analyse them and thereby arrive at conclusions about the personality and life is the Avataras. Sri Aurobindo beautifully remarks in Thoughts and Aphorisms about this fallacy in his characteristic way thus:

Tangled is the way of works in the world. When Rama the Avatar murdered Vali or Krishna, who was God himself, assassinated, to liberate his nation, his tyrant uncle Kansa, who shall say whether they did good or did evil? But this we can feel, that they acted divinely. [CWSA 12: 467 – 468]

The seeker after divine knowledge finds in the description of Krishna stealing the robes of the Gopis one of the deepest parables of God’s ways with the soul, the devotee a perfect rendering in divine act of his heart’s mystic experiences, the prurient & the Puritan (two faces of one temperament) only a lustful story. Men bring what they have in themselves and see it reflected in the Scripture. [CWSA 12: 490]

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It is not the personality, the character that is of the first importance in rebirth — it is the psychic being who stands behind the evolution of the nature and evolves with it.