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At the Feet of The Mother

The Salvation is Physical

Fifty years ago an event had rocked a small corner of the earth in the southern tip of India. The small little corner chosen as a window opening towards the future was Pondicherry and the event that brought silent tremors to this wonder space was the Mother’s (aka Mirra Alfassa) Mahasamadhi. Though the event had far reaching consequences it was observed in silence as thousands of devotees and disciples filed past quietly to pay their tributes. It is difficult to say what must have transpired in their life that was centered around the Mother. She had been the sole hope and refuge; to a few She had been the very breath of their life. The human witnesses of that last dire scene stood helpless in their knowledge and powerless in their action. Whence have human beings comprehended the ways of the Divine especially when he takes a physical body, becomes one with our frail struggling humanity and acts as if one among us. Sri Aurobindo wrote prophetically as if describing the moment and its deep occult significance.

‘A day may come when she must stand unhelped
On a dangerous brink of the world’s doom and hers,
Carrying the world’s future on her lonely breast,
Carrying the human hope in a heart left sole
To conquer or fail on a last desperate verge,
Alone with death and close to extinction’s edge.
Her single greatness in that last dire scene
Must cross alone a perilous bridge in Time
And reach an apex of world-destiny
Where all is won or all is lost for man.’ [Savitri]

It is impossible for any human account to describe the mystery of the moment. What the eyes see is the physical event and that too primarily on the surface. Who can say what was happening inside the cells of Her physical body touched by the Supramental flame? We can only surmise that they were being welded with the Divine and hence escaping one by one the law of death. Even though the gross physical body lay in state, albeit much smaller in appearance, who could pierce the iron veil and see the new body that was being formed behind? In a conversation dated March 24, 1972 She did describe the new body:

‘For the first time, early in the morning, I saw myself, my body—I do not know whether it is the supramental body or… (how to say it?) a body in transition, but I had a body altogether new, in the sense that it was sexless—it was not a woman nor was it a man.

It was very white. But it is because my skin is white, I believe, I do not know.

It was very slim (gesture indicating slenderness)—it was pretty. Truly a harmonious form.

So it was the first time. I did not know at all, I had no idea of what it would be like, none at all, and I saw—I was like that, I had become like that.’

Who could see this glorious body or the New Body then? An year and a half passed between this new body and shedding of the old. What would have happened? What could have happened? Who could say?

Yet with passage of time more and more human beings have turned to her. They are as if called from every walk of life, from all over the world, from every type of humanity. They are suddenly seized and drawn irresistibly so to say. Those who came after the event, who never saw her physically, yet connect with Her so intimately, perhaps even more intimately than when She was in her gross physical body. That body was as if like a veil and even though the Divine within was shown through the veil and her gestures breathed the hidden divinity. But the New Body that She spoke of acts directly as it were, bypassing the limits of our physical vision. It is another kind of vision, another kind of contact, another kind of nearness, another kind of relation that humanity is forgiving with Her. Sri Aurobindo had always asked us to forge this deeper bond with the Mother, the bond with Her ever-living Presence transcending the changing terms of life and death:

‘The human mind shut in the prison of its half-lit obscurity cannot follow the many-sided freedom of the steps of the Divine Shakti. The rapidity and complexity of her vision and action outrun its stumbling comprehension; the measures of her movement are not its measures. Bewildered by the swift alternation of her many different personalities, her making of rhythms and her breaking of rhythms, her accelerations of speed and her retardations, her varied ways of dealing with the problem of one and of another, her taking up and dropping now of this line and now of that one and her gathering of them together, it will not recognise the way of the Supreme Power when it is circling and sweeping upwards through the maze of the Ignorance to a supernal Light. Open rather your soul to her and be content to feel her with the psychic nature and see her with the psychic vision that alone make a straight response to the Truth. Then the Mother herself will enlighten by their psychic elements your mind and heart and life and physical consciousness and reveal to them too her ways and her nature.’

Soon after the event of 17th November 1973, Nolini Kant Gupta, the foremost of Sri Aurobindo’s disciple gave this message.

(1) The Mother’s body belonged to the old creation. It was meant to be the pedestal of the New Body. It served its purpose well. The New Body will come.

This is a test, how far we are faithful to Her, true to Her Consciousness.

The revival of the body would have meant revival of the old troubles in the body. The body troubles were eliminated so far as could be done while in the body—farther was not possible. For a new mutation, a new procedure was needed. “Death” was the first stage in that process.

(2) Sweet Mother, Your physical body belonged to the old creation because you wanted to be one with your children. You wanted this body to uphold the New Body you were building upon it, and it gave you the service you asked of it. You will come with your New Body.

Your children’s, the world’s call and aspiration, love and consecration are laid at your feet in gratitude.

Subsequently Nolini da was blessed to have a vision of this new body of the Mother:

The Mother says: “Just see. Look at me. I am here come back in my new body, – divine, transformed and glorious. And I am the same mother, still human. Do not worry. Do not be concerned about your own self, your progress and realisation, nor about others. I am here, look at me, gaze into me, enter into me wholly, merge into my being, lose yourself into my love, with your love. You will see all problems solved, everything done. Forget all else, forget the world. Remember me alone, be one with me, with my love…”

Fifty years away from the event strangely and paradoxically more and more people across the globe have had the gift of Her Grace to see and behold Her new body with the inner vision. Those who do not yet feel Her near, responding to their prayer and aspirations, answering to their hopes and becoming the shelter and refuge, the centre of their existence, the Life of their life. Shall we then say that the Mother took Mahasamadhi on the 17th November 1973 or shall we say that She who dwelt in a single body now has taken up many bodies as Her own. She who was known as the Mother of Sri Aurobindo Ashram has now universalised herself and become the Mother of the New Creation with the Soul of humanity as Her permanent dwelling place.

 

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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.