Tuesday, May 24, 2011

A prayer for a New Way

[The 'preamble' of The New Way - a study in the rise and establishment of a gnostic society, Volumes 1 & 2, Æon Books (1981). Picture added.]

             

I pray for a new way to come about, a way that will cause the barriers
between nations and between individuals to fall away, —that we may
come to the realisation of a new way.

        I pray for peace and harmony and good will—above all, good
will—among men. I pray for the emergence of a greater understanding
and a breakthrough in the attitude of division, be this either political,
social or religious. May all men be brought to the realisation that they
are members of the one planetary family, regardless of color or creed,
regardless of wealth or poverty.

       I pray for prosperity, that each man and woman and child may
have what is necessary to live in decency in this world, so that their
passage on this planet will be a joy and signify a progress, —a
spiritual and a material rise.

       May each man come to enjoy the possibility of moving about as he
wishes over the Earth, as his one home and the one home of all his
brethren; and to express himself as he may like; and to know freedom
in all things. But may this freedom be only for the expression of the
highest part of himself. May all the ugliness of the old man fall away.

       May the whole Earth come to realise the one goal, and to
understand that no matter how contradictory the appearances may be, each
of us is here for the realisation of the One Goal: to help the Earth to
realise herself, though her ways are many and appear each one to offer a
resistance to the other. Yet this resistance is merely to create the conditions
needed for the realisation, the all-embracing Realisation.

       Let each person see the cause within himself for the suffering and
the agony of his Earth. Let him understand that the division in his
being is productive of a division within his society. Let him heal this
division, and then come to a new way in the collective body—that of
true collaboration in a life of harmony, of positive growth, and of all that
is true and good and real.

       May all the forms of religion fall away—anything that seeks to
pull this new light into the ways of the past: there is a way that is not
religious, —may this be revealed.

       May the new light shine forth with a brilliance such as has rarely
been seen in the history of the Earth, and may this be as a magnet which
draws people to it and fills them with the thirst for Truth; and grant
them the power to express this Truth in all the ways of life.

       May we not seek miracles—let us rather have realisation. This is
the solid way. Let us not see visions or lights or etheric forms . . . let us BE

light, let us SEE IN UNDERSTANDING
, let us be the ‘new seeing’.
       Let the new way of Love manifest, the real way, that carries in it
a power of transformation. Though we may not recognise it as Love, let it
BE
, in spite of us. Let Power indeed lend itself to Love, and these two
will carry us forward on the glorious new way. Let each man and
woman and child be touched by THE NEW WAY OF POWER AND LOVE.

       But let us truly move forward to the New: let us not call the Old
the New. Let the New come forth in spite of ourselves.

       May the Power of Harmony, the Power of Truth and the Power
of Love manifest, and may we become each day the purer instruments for
this integral realisation.

    
    — Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet (Thea)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Better Judgment Day

Link to Photo Source
A few months ago I saw a billboard announcing 21 May 2011 as Judgment Day. My immediate thought was that perhaps 22 May 2011 should be celebrated as Better Judgment Day. Not MORE judgment ... but simply better judgment, better discrimination, better vision, etc. By better, I suppose I mean wider and more all-encompassing ... more accurate and integrous in terms of the Whole dynamic being that we are. I am sure most of us on planet Earth would benefit from the grace of having better judgment or better capacities of discernment. Because as is, we have a have a difficult time discriminating between what is TRUE and what is just the limited and distorted imaginings of an individual ego/mind or the collective imaginings, distortions or agreements of a mass of people. Most of us are caught up in one way or another in individual or collective stories that do not necessarily reflect the truth of our existence, nor the truth of our potential.

Humans need better judgment in most all actions and endeavors, but perhaps the biggest and most immediate area that calls for better judgment, is in the area of religion.

People have many names for the Divine and many ideas about what constitutes a 'right' relationship and communion with the Divine. People celebrate many different prophets, divine personas and teachers who have historically inspired or who presently inspire a powerful feeling and vision of Divinity. Most of the time people are born into their religion, and would likely have been successfully indoctrinated into another religion and world-view, had they been born elsewhere.

So, knowing this to be true, how is it that those celebrating the Divine by one name and by one strain of inherited customs, do not recognize that even though others are celebrating the Divine by other names and by other strains of inherited customs, the underlying impulse towards witnessing or experiencing Divinity is the same? Different languages, different cultures, different prophets, and different sacred texts are naturally going to produce different interpretations and different expressions of the impulse to observe the Divine hand supporting our material evolution or material experience. The pressing question now is: When will all of us participating in this natural process of varying interpretation, expression and splintered interests become aware of the process, and become blissfully aware of our common heart, our common origin, our common divinity, despite all apparent differences.

Each religion has some idea, vision or HOPE of a divinely-inspired destruction of our corrupted civilization and the birth of a new civilization and age based on the true force, true vision or manifestation of the Divine. I am curious to see in my life time, what religions and what portion of the religious masses will take a step back and consider that a substantial element of what is to be destroyed in any true apocalypse ('apocalypse' meaning: uncovering of light) is not only the unconsciousness that has allowed Divinity to be fragmented into so many bickering and warring sects, but also all the structures and institutions built up upon such unconsciousness

Humanity should learn to celebrate the dismissal, destruction and dissolution of all inherited (and newly-learned) misconceptions and false separative barriers that block our realization and manifestation of a universal harmony and shared journey. We should honestly face the many generations, the many centuries of 'bad' judgment that has led us to our current world crisies (a world in dis-integration) and learn to support each other in our ability to experience and manifest higher Truth, higher consciousness and essential Bliss.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Links to Online PDF's of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother's works


'Our greater self of knowledge waits for us ...
Our larger being sits behind cryptic walls:
There are greatnesses hidden in our unseen parts

That wait their hour to step into life's front ...'


- Savitri, Book VII, The Book of Yoga,
Canto II: The Parable of the Search for the Soul

I have found the following links to many of Sri Aurobindo's and the Mother's works in online (in pdf format). I have most of these substantial books sitting in a bookshelf beside my desk, and am amazed and grateful to find them all available for easy reference and for the benefit of those who don't have access to hard copies.


Sri Aurobindo


Karmayogin - Political Writtings and Speeches 1909- 1910
Essays Divine and Human (1910-1950)
The Secret of the Veda
Hymns to the Mystic Fire
The Upanishads
Essays on the Gita
The Human Cycle, the Ideal of Human Unity, War and Self-Determination
Essays of Philosophy and Yoga
The Life Divine, Book I

The Life Divine, Book II
The Synthesis of Yoga
Letters on Yoga - I, II, III 
Savitri - a legend and a symbol

The Mother


THE MOTHER'S AGENDA - 13 VOLUMES

COLLECTED WORKS OF THE MOTHER. - IN 17 VOLUMES

1    Prayers and Meditations
2     Words of Long Ago (- 1920)
3     Question and Answers (1929-1931) 
4     Question and Answers (1950-1951)
5     Questions and Answers (1953)
6     Questions and Answers (1954)
7     Questions and Answers (1955)
8     Questions and Answers (1956)
9     Questions and Answers (1957-1958)
10   On Thoughts and Aphorisms (1958-1970)
11   Notes Along the Way (1961-1973)
12   On Education
13   Words of the Mother - I
14   Words of the Mother - II
15   Words of the Mother - III
16   Some Answers of the Mother
17   More Answers of the Mother

Friday, May 6, 2011

Evolutionary Transformation via 'enlarging self-knowledge'

The following excerpt from Sri Aurobindo's The Life Divine is continuation of my May 1, 2 & 3 posts:  'On Matter and Evolutionary Transformation', 'More on Matter and Evolutionary Transformation' and 'Evolution Is a Process of Transmutation and Re-allocation of Energies'. These posts concern the Supramental and Integral transformation of matter, life and mind envisioned by Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet.


'To get beyond the ego is imperative, but one cannot get beyond the self, – except by finding it supremely, universally. For the self is not the ego; it is one with the All and the One and in finding it it is the All and the One that we discover in our self: the contradiction, the separation disappears, but the self, the spiritual reality remains, united with the One and the All by that delivering disappearance.

'The higher self-knowledge begins therefore as soon as man has got beyond his preoccupation with the relation of Nature and God to his superficial being, his most apparent self. One Step is to know that this life is not all, to get at the conception of his own temporal eternity, to realise, to become concretely aware of that subjective persistence which is called the immortality of the soul. When he knows that there are states beyond the material and lives behind and before him, at any rate a pre-existence and a subsequent existence, he is on his way to get rid of his temporal ignorance by enlarging himself beyond the immediate movements of Time into the possession of his own eternity. Another Step forward is to learn that his surface waking state is only a small part of his being, to begin to fathom the abyss of the Inconscient and depths of the subconscient and subliminal and scale the heights of the superconscient; so he commences the removal of his psychological self-ignorance. A third step is to find out that there is something in him other than his instrumental mind, life and body, not only an immortal ever-developing individual soul that supports his nature but an eternal immutable self and spirit, and to learn what are the categories of his spiritual being, until he discovers that all in him is an expression of the spirit and distinguishes the link between his lower and his higher existence; thus he sets out to remove his constitutional self-ignorance. Discovering self and spirit he discovers God; he finds out that there is a Self beyond the temporal: he comes to the vision of the Self in the cosmic consciousness as the divine Reality behind Nature and this world of beings; his mind opens to the thought of the sense of the Absolute of whom self and the individual and the cosmos are so many faces; the cosmic, the egoistic, the original ignorance begin to lose the rigidness of their hold upon him. In his attempt to cast his existence into the mould of this enlarging self-knowledge his whole view and motive of life, thought and action are progressively modified and transformed; his practical ignorance of himself, his nature and his object of existence diminishes: he has set his step on the path which leads out of falsehood and suffering of a limited and partial into the perfect possession and enjoyment of a true and complete existence.

'In the course of this progress he discovers step by step the unity of the three categories with which he started. For, first, he finds that in his manifest being he is one with cosmos and Nature; mind, life and body, the soul in the succession of Time, the conscient, subconscient and superconscient, – these in there various relations and the result of their relations are cosmos and are Nature. But he finds too that in all which stands behind them or on which they are based, he is one with God; for the Absolute, the Spirit, the Self spaceless and timeless, the Self manifests in the cosmos and Lord of Nature, – all this is what we mean by God, and in all this his own being goes back to God and derives from it; he is the Absolute, the Self, the Spirit self-projected in a multiplicity of itself into cosmos and veiled in Nature. In both of these realizations he finds his unity with all other souls and beings, – relatively in Nature, since he is one with them in mind, vitality, matter, soul, every cosmic principle and result, however various in energy and act of energy, disposition of principle and disposition of result, but absolutely in God, because the one Absolute, the one Self, the one Spirit is ever the Self of all and the origin, possessor and enjoyer of their multitudinous diversities. The unity of God and Nature cannot fail to manifest itself to him for he finds in the end that it is the Absolute who is all these relativities; he sees that it is the Spirit of whom every other principle is a manifestation; he discovers that it is the Self who has become all these becomings; he feels that it is the Shakti or Power if being and consciousness of the Lord of all beings which is Nature and is acting in the cosmos. Thus in the progress of our self-knowledge we arrive at that by the discovery of which all is known as one with our self and by the possession of which all is possessed and enjoyed in our own self-existence.

'Equally, by virtue of this unity, the knowledge of the universe must lead the mind of man to the same large revelation. For he cannot know Nature as Matter and Force and Life without being driven to scrutinize the relation of mental consciousness with these principles, and once he knows the real nature of mind, he must go inevitably beyond every surface appearance. He must discover the will and intelligence secret in the works of Force, operative in material and vital phenomena; he must perceive it as one in the waking consciousness, the subconscient and the superconscient: he must find the soul in the body of the material universe. Pursuing Nature through these categories in which he recognizes his unity with the rest of the cosmos, he finds a Supernature behind all that is apparent, a supreme power of the Spirit in Time and beyond Time, in Space and beyond Space, a conscious Power of the Self who by her becomes all becomings, of the Absolute who by her manifests all relativities. He knows her, in other words, not only as material Energy, Life-Force, Mind-Energy, the many faces of Nature, but as the power of Knowledge-Will of the Divine Lord of being, the Consciousness-Force of the self-existent Eternal and Infinite.'  [bold emphasis added]
– Sri Aurobindo, The Life Divine, Chapter XVII
‘The Progress to Knowledge – God, Man and Nature’,
pp 726-728 of PDF version

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Evolution Is a Process of Transmutation and Re-allocation of Energies


'Everything has one and the same constituent element, you see;
and everything lies IN the interrelations.
Well, it's exactly the same for the transformation. …'


The Mother, 9 June 1962

The following excerpts are continuation of my May 1 & 2 posts:  'On Matter and Evolutionary Transformation' and 'More on Matter and Evolutionary Transformation' a discussion concerning the Supramental and Integral transformation of matter, life and mind envisioned by Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet. I selected these excerpts because they demonstrate the similarities between the Mother's 9 June 1962 Agenda entry, wherein she speaks of transformation as a change of relationships or inter-relations within the whole, and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet's understanding and teachings regarding the nature of our evolutionary journey.   

Excerpts from The New Way – a study in the rise and establishment of a gnostic society, Chapter 3, ‘The Way of Non-Violence’ by Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet:

‘The new world is to found itself on the principle or the seed, let us call it, of Truth. Therefore in all things and in all the movements of the individual and group expression this light must be the guide along the way of unfoldment, this must be the secret formula that opens the doors of the descending new world. Such a Seed of Truth as the beacon-light must be evident even in the new society’s handling of the old one – and it must be the core and key of the process of working-out. The seed of truth is inherent in all things; the stuff of truth-consciousness is the inner-substance of all manifestation, and our evolution is simply for the purpose of peeling off more and more layers that clothe the inner light of Truth.’ (p. 34)

***

‘… The newness of today is precisely to be seen more easily in this need to integrate all the opposites, to see the place and purpose of all the myriad manifestations of the cosmic existence. Today’s world must as well embrace the very Earth that is crumbling. While not building on its foundations it must nonetheless utilize the energies that are being withdrawn from the decaying sheath in an accurately controlled manner. Otherwise these energies will remain ever free to continue in the service of the Ignorance. Cosmic evolution is always a process of transmutation or re-allocation of energies and nothing more, a re-ordering of the One Divine Energy and its progressive self-revelation and manifestation.

‘A fine and precise control is the secret key. Yet it is a control that must in some way arise of itself as it were, from the depths of itself. That is, it must not be imposed by an outside force, however enlightened, however divine or well-intentioned this may appear to be. The new creation, by a miracle of the re-allocation of energies under a divine ægis, will embrace, absorb and integrate the energies that are cast off by the process of disintegration. It will make use of these; indeed, it will find that these energies are the powers that will carry it forward more speedily on the path toward the completion of the Divine Will. The period of transition, as our times may rightly be called, is like unto a mighty brewing process, whereby the most diverse elements are cast into the cauldron to form a new and transmuted blend. (p. 35) [bold emphasis added]

***

… ‘The time has come’, were the words the Mother heard pronounced on the day of the Supramental Manifestation in 1956. And truly as of that time, Time has come, as an ally now.

‘It is by the all-pervading energy of Time—the New Time, as it were—and the perfect control it exerts over all manifested things from within the core of matter itself, of which it is the binding energy, that the invincible power for a total and secure protection has been born.  All forms, all manifestations bear in their essence this secret energy; thus through and by it the new way will reveal the truth in the doctrine of non-violence. A control must be perfected from within the centre of things, from the heart itself of every minute particle. And in this sense we may being to speak of a transformation of Matter. At the same time—nothing must be wasted in the creation—hence even the Ignorance must find its place and its purpose, and reveal the greater truths of itself. Likewise all relations take on another meaning in this new way of Time; the most negative actions may well be the very method of Time’s harmony, unknown to us yet allied with us. Even we must state that there can be no misuse or evil manipulation of this energy, for its essence is harmony and whosoever passes these portals walks into a consciousness of the harmonious flow of things and only assists in the more perfect unfoldment of Time irrespective of the original motivation. Everything becomes Time’s field and tool, everything is Time’s form—thus to be conscious of Time is to better do the work of the Time-Spirit upon Earth. The powers of the Ignorance are transformed because the Ignorance itself is now compelled to act according to the inner control of the new time, the Supramental Harmony of Time. (p. 39) [bold emphasis added]

***

Upcoming: Excerpts from Sri Aurobindo's The Life Divine on this same theme.

Monday, May 2, 2011

More On Matter and Evolutionary Transformation

A 'Gnostic Circle'/Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet/Sri Aurobindo inspired image
representing the evolutionary cycle. LT 2003
My friend who invited inquiry on the Mother's 9 June 1962 comments on matter and evolutionary transformation, found similarities between the Mother's view and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet's teachings ... especially PNB's teaching that there is an active divine power hidden the heart of all manifested things that organizes and supermentally 'Puts everything in its [proper] place' in the course of time.

Another friend in the inquiry group was reminded of a dream the Mother had on 5 February 1969 (recorded in The Mother's Agenda) about the 'numbered-expression' of the Supermental consciousness-force's which would be applied to life 'in a coming realization'.

All of us in the informal inquiry group I have spoken of, do find that Ms. Norelli-Bachelet's realizations in the early 1970's concerning the orderly progression of the Divine Will in the real stages and cycles of time (as discussed in The Gnostic Circle), do fit the bill in terms of the Mother's premonition. All the evidence 'adds up' so to speak.

My comments to the group on the similarities between the Mother's comments on matter and transformation and PNB's teachings were as follows: 'The Mother’s words do remind me of the Point and the Circle and of Thea’s yoga which invites individuals to consider not only that our unfolding circumstances are inseparable from a shared Divine Source or Absolute (the Point), but also that our unfolding circumstances are also well-designed, well-choreographed … well-orchestrated. Thea positions or orients individuals on the Earth, in the Cosmos in a way that we can increasingly appreciate and recognize That which informs the whole play (That which is constantly putting everything in its proper place). Without that appreciation, recognition and orientation it is all too easy to de-value and completely miss the truth-consciousness-force-bliss that is the immortal heart of our material existence. Also, without that appreciation and recognition, we get hurt by the pressures and necessities of the consciousness-force ... rather than uplifted, fortified and increased. ...

'Perhaps it will be easier, in time, for individuals to adopt the right attitude/true position or orientation within this ‘same thing’ that we are. At least we have been given some essential clues as to how this is accomplished, even if they remain obscure to most. 

'It seems clear enough that our attitude and alignments affect our innards as well as our mood and our actions … but what does ‘intra-atomic’ movement and 'intra-atomic' transformation mean in terms of our material evolution on Earth? What will it be like to be aware of our interrelations within the whole, on an intra-atomic level? And how do we change without the 'semblance of disintegration'? I find that patience with our epic process of discovery does not come naturally to me AT ALL! But it is always such a cellular relief when I do manage to be patient.'

___________________

More Links and Posts on this subject will follow, including relevant excerpts from Sri Aurobindo's The Life Divine and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet's The New Way – a study in the rise and establishment of a Gnostic society (if I get her permission).

The Mother's Agenda: For those who don't have their own copy of The Mother's Agenda, a free-online PDF is available. 9 June 1962 begins on page 809, and 5 February 1969 on page 2593. This PDF takes some time to load ... but it IS worth the wait. Also the Mother's 19 November 1969 comments on Stability and Change, and Inertia and Transformation further add light to the topic of matter and evolutionary transformation  (p. 2882 of the PDF).

Sunday, May 1, 2011

On Matter and Evolutionary Transformation

A friend recently passed on and invited inquiry on the following comments made by the Mother on matter and transformation, elaborating on the 6 June 1962 statement she made to Satprem, ‘If matter where changeable, it would have changed LONG ago.’ It reminds me of the gap between what our minds think or imagine constitutes real change and spiritual transformation, and what actually constitutes real change and spiritual transformation. In Sri Aurobindo's vision of evolution towards the 'Life Divine', new stages of evolution are a higher organization of the previous one. Life initiated a new organization and potential of Matter. Mind initiated a new organization and potential of Life and Matter. And in the next phase, Spirit initiates a new 'Supermental' organization and potential of Mind, Life and Matter.

The Mother's Agenda
9 June 1962


The Mother: 'There is nothing to change! Only the relations between things change....
       
'As an analogy, look at what science has discovered about the so-called composition of matter at the atomic level – there's nothing to change. Nothing to change! The constituent element doesn't change, the relations between things are what change.
       
'Everything has one and the same constituent element, you see; and everything lies IN the interrelations. Well, it's exactly the same for the transformation. …'

[Further on in the discussion:]

The Mother: … ‘Ultimately there is but one power and one substance. There are varying modalities – countless modalities – of power and substance, but there is but ONE power and ONE substance, as there is but ONE consciousness and ONE truth.’

Satprem: 'Yes, but when you say that what changes is only “the relations between things, it’s still a matter of subjectivity (I use the word for lack of a better one). But when it comes down to the brass tacks of transformation – physical immortality in the body for instance – doesn’t it involve more than a simple inner change of relations? Doesn’t MATTER itself have to be transformed? So there has to be a power over matter. Not merely a change of relations … no?'

The Mother: 'No; you can’t grasp what I mean by the word “relation” unless you take it scientifically. Your body, and my body, this table, this carpet, are all made up of the SAME thing. The differences we see – different bodies, different forms – are due to the movements of the interrelations within this same thing.'

Satprem: 'Yes, so then it’s the interrelations that have to change.'
The Mother: 'But this has to be very concretely grasped. Well, I say that the power must change the inter-atomic movement. Then instead of disintegrating, your bodily substance will obey the movement of Transformation, you follow? But it’s all the SAME thing! What must change or the relations among things.

'And so it becomes EVIDENT that immortality can be achieved! Things get destroyed simply because of their own rigidity – and even then, it’s only a semblance of destruction; the essential element stays the same, everywhere, in everything, in decay just as much as in life.

'It’s extremely interesting!

'Ultimately, it’s all the constructing Will. This constructing Will is eternal, immortal and infinite – it’s obvious – so if it is left to this Will, there is no reason why Its creation shouldn’t partake of this immortality and infinity – things don’t necessarily have to go through the semblance of disintegration to change form, it’s not indispensible. It has come to be that way for some reason or other (which is probably none of our business), but it’s not indispensible, it could be different.’
_____

I found this thread of insight continued in the Agenda on 23 June 1962:

The Mother: 'From the standpoint of spiritual knowledge, decay, dissolution and disintegration unquestionably result from a wrong attitude.'
Satprem: ‘A wrong attitude?’

The Mother: 'Yes, a wrong attitude.
'My own experience is going on in the tiniest details, details imperceptible in themselves but pointing in a certain direction that, increasingly, is this: when you take a wrong attitude, it immediately sets off all the disorders. Almost as if you shift into a wrong gear – the image is too rigid, of course, it’s not really that … but we can say that the whole universe is rolling smoothly along and it’s only when you go like this or like that (the Mother indicates a shifting of gears) that disorders arise. You can have a wrong attitude in a number of ways. It’s like a slight shifting of gears: things still work (assuming the mechanism to be particularly supple) but they grate – they grate and therefore wear out and deteriorate and break down. But if they were in the true position, there would be no friction. [bold emphasis added]

'The sense of friction doesn’t exist – it disappears, there’s no friction. Friction results only from the wrong angle … from something, a sort of shift.

'Of course, this is much more easily expressed in psychological terms – psychologically, it’s very simple, crystal clear – but even MATERIALLY it’s like that. …

'The body itself senses that it must learn to live in eternity.

'That seems quite indispensable.

'And for that, surely, the first thing that has to go is haste, impatience – that much is clear.' 

____________________

I will add related links and further posts on this thread in the coming days and weeks.