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At the Feet of The Mother

The Mind and Its Possibilities

Our thoughts and feelings, our faith and fear have a deep impact upon the body. If the body is like a machine then the mind is the switch that sets this machine move in one direction or the other. It is not a blind automatism that drives our bodily systems. And even if it were so man is given the ability to influence his body by his mental movements. Modern psychology recognises this, the ancient science of yoga knew it very well. The emphasis therefore was on mastering our thoughts and feelings, our will and impulses, as they impact upon our bodily machinery. At the same time, the yogic science did not see the human body as a mere automatic machine but as a half-conscious form that has evolved out of seemingly unconscious matter through a long and complex process of animal evolution. But by this very fact the body can evolve further and become fully conscious.

This can happen if man can evolve out of its half-conscious state into the full possibilities of our consciousness. As is our inner consciousness so is the machine or equipment given to us. A conscious and illumined being can put a pressure upon nature to provide or build for its use a better ad more conscious body. All this is however not yet recognised by the psychological sciences of today. It accepts evolution in theory but denies it in practice. What we mean by this is that it admits, with modern science, the evolutionary process that has gone into the emergence of man out of the ape even as the ape emerged out of lower animals and plants and eventually dust. However it looks upon this evolution as a mechanical random process over which we have no control. It is another kind of fatalism, a material fatalism so to say.

But yoga stretches this evolution further and takes its stand on the possibility of human beings consciously participating in the evolutionary process. Its proof is there in every human being who constantly aspires for some kind of progress or the other. We are conditioned as it were to consciously evolve. All efforts at improving our living conditions, all efforts at education and a growth of knowledge, all efforts to excel in sports and music and arts and sciences are an indication that man wants to consciously progress. Only he does not know the direction and the intrinsic process. It is this that yoga provides, framework of evolution and the processes involved. It is further testified with millenniums of experience of countless yoga practitioners.

This is perhaps a lesson that nature is trying to drive hard at us. Yes we can and we must consciously evolve. Even to just survive we must evolve. Whatever refuses this intrinsic evolutionary urge in man tends to fall back and eventually collapse.


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