Seeing in Understanding ⁓ The Symbols & Sense of 2020 ⁓ Part Three

Horsetail Falls ("Firefall"), Yosemite National Park (source: Wikimedia Commons)

⁓ Part Three ⁓

A Brief History of the Supramental Yoga & Descent Up To 1976

“What the Supramental will do the mind cannot foresee or lay down. The mind is Ignorance seeking for the Truth, the Supramental by its very definition is Truth Consciousness, Truth in possession of itself and fulfilling itself by its own power. In a supramental world imperfection and disharmony are bound to disappear. But what we propose just now is not to make the earth a supramental world but to bring down the supramental as a power and established consciousness in the midst of the rest – to let it work there and fulfil itself as Mind descended into Life and Matter and has worked as a Power there to fulfil itself in the midst of the rest. This will be enough to change the world and to change Nature by breaking down its present limits…when the Light is there, the Light itself will do its work – when the supramental Will stands on earth that Will will decide. It will establish a perfection, a harmony, a Truth-creation…”. – Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga I, CWSA, Vol. 28, pp. 294-95 

In Part One I discussed some of the symbols of the Covid-19 pandemic that come into view when looking at the unfolding circumstances of our collective evolution as “part of an extremely precise play of forces” in which the positive and the negative both serve towards the same awakening or birth of the Higher Self. In Part Two I presented various quotes and excerpts from the written works of Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet (Thea), emphasizing their view of the critical evolutionary step (the evolution of consciousness) that is currently pressing upon our world. This view is part of the foundation that is necessary for those who are interested in coming to appreciate and experience (to “see in understanding”) humanity’s many “crises of destiny” via the higher Supramental Light and unifying Truth of the indwelling Soul. In Parts Three and Four I am presenting another part of this foundation which is a brief-as-possible overview of the history of the Supramental Descent. In Part Five, I will discuss various elements of Thea’s Supramental Cosmology, which are essential keys of seeing Soul’s play or field of unfolding circumstances (whether individual or collective) as a unified Divine whole. 

Sri Aurobindo was born on 15 August 1872 (a 9-power year) in Kolkata (Calcutta), India. From the age of seven, he lived and received his education in England, returning to India on 6 February 1893, whereupon he worked for Baroda State and eventually for the state-run college, until 1906. During this time he learned Sanskrit and Bengali, and read many of India’s ancient texts. His active or focused practice of yoga began in 1904 (at the age of 31 or 32 depending on the date he began) starting with 5-6 hours of pranayama a day.1 Although Sri Aurobindo did consider 1904 the beginning of his practice of yoga,2  he also indicated the following.
“[My Yoga] began in London, sprouted the moment I set foot on Apollo Bunder [in Bombay], touching Indian soil, flowered one day in the first year of my stay in Baroda, at the moment when there threatened to be an accident to my carriage.” – Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Himself, CWSA, Vol. 35, p. 233
Upon that first step back on to Indian soil, he had the yogic experience of "a vast calm descended upon him... this calm surrounded him and remained for long months afterwards".3 And later that same year, he had "the vision of the Godhead surging up from within and averting the danger" of a carriage accident.4   

His work as a freedom fighter for India’s independence began under the radar in 1899 and became more overt in 1905.6 While spending most of his 36th year (May 1908 ‒ May 1909) in Alipore Jail on charges of sedition against the British Raj, Sri Aurobindo was fully initiated into his yogic mission via a mystical communion with Krishna (the 8th Avatar of Vishnu) and Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902). He discussed this yogic communion and divine mission (adesh) in his 30 May 1909 Uttarpara Speech.
"I turned to the Yoga and resolved to practise it and find out if my idea was right, I did it in this spirit and with this prayer to [God], ‘If Thou art, then Thou knowest my heart. Thou knowest that I do not ask for Mukti, I do not ask for anything which others ask for. I ask only for strength to uplift this nation, I ask only to be allowed to live and work for this people whom I love and to whom I pray that I may devote my life. … Give me Thy Adesh. I do not know what work to do or how to do it. Give me a message.' 
“In the communion of Yoga two messages came. The first message said, "I have given you a work and it is to help to uplift this nation. Before long the time will come when you will have to go out of jail; for it is not my will that this time either you should be convicted or that you should pass the time, as others have to do, in suffering for their country. I have called you to work, and that is the Adesh for which you have asked. I give you the Adesh to go forth and do my work." The second message came and it said, "Something has been shown to you in this year of seclusion, something about which you had your doubts and it is the truth of the Hindu religion. It is this religion that I am raising up before the world, it is this that I have perfected and developed through the Rishis, saints and Avatars, and now it is going forth to do my work among the nations. I am raising up this nation to send forth my word. This is the Sanatan Dharma, this is the eternal religion which you did not really know before, but which I have now revealed to you. The agnostic and the sceptic in you have been answered, for I have given you proofs within and without you, physical and subjective, which have satisfied you. When you go forth, speak to your nation always this word, that it is for the Sanatan Dharma that they arise, it is for the world and not for themselves that they arise. I am giving them freedom for the service of the world. When therefore it is said that India shall rise, it is the Sanatan Dharma that shall be great. When it is said that India shall expand and extend herself, it is the Sanatan Dharma that shall expand and extend itself over the world. It is for the Dharma and by the Dharma that India exists. To magnify the religion means to magnify the country. I have shown you that I am everywhere and in all men and in all things, that I am in this movement and I am not only working in those who are striving for the country but I am working also in those who oppose them and stand in their path. I am working in everybody and whatever men may think or do, they can do nothing but help in my purpose. They also are doing my work, they are not my enemies but my instruments. In all your actions you are moving forward without knowing which way you move. You mean to do one thing and you do another. You aim at a result and your efforts subserve one that is different or contrary. It is Shakti that has gone forth and entered into the people. Since long ago I have been preparing this uprising and now the time has come and it is I who will lead it to its fulfilment." [Bold emphasis added.]
From that point onward, Sri Aurobindo left his political life behind. He moved to Pondicherry in 1910 where the Sri Aurobindo Ashram “[grew] around him as its centre.”7   

The Mother (Mirra Alfassa) was born on 21 February 1878 (a 6-power year) in Paris, France, some five and a half years after Sri Aurobindo’s birth. The following is the Mother’s account of how she came to meet Sri Aurobindo on 14 March 1914 at the age of 36, via an occult contact (or mystical communion) with Krishna who she later recognized in Sri Aurobindo.
“When and how did I become conscious of a mission which I was to fulfil on earth? And when and how [did I meet] Sri Aurobindo?  
“These two questions you have asked me and I promised a short reply. For the knowledge of the mission, it is difficult to say when it came to me. It is as though I were born with it, and following the growth of the mind and brain, the precision and completeness of this consciousness grew also.  
“Between 11 and 13 a series of psychic and spiritual experiences revealed to me not only the existence of God but man’s possibility of uniting with Him, of realising Him integrally in consciousness and action, of manifesting Him upon earth in a life divine. This, along with a practical discipline for its fulfilment, was given to me during my body’s sleep by several teachers, some of whom I met afterwards on the physical plane.
“Later on, as the interior and exterior development proceeded, the spiritual and psychic relation with one of these beings became more and more clear and frequent; and although I knew little of the Indian philosophies and religions at that time I was led to call him Krishna, and henceforth I was aware that it was with him (whom I knew I should meet on earth one day) that the divine work was to be done.  
“In the year 1910 my husband came alone to Pondicherry where, under very interesting and peculiar circumstances, he made the acquaintance of Sri Aurobindo. Since then we both strongly wished to return to India—the country which I had always cherished as my true mother-country. And in 1914 this joy was granted to us.  
As soon as I saw Sri Aurobindo I recognized in him the well-known being whom I used to call Krishna.... And this is enough to explain why I am fully convinced that my place and my work are near him, in India.” – the Mother, Pondicherry, 1920, Collected Works of the Mother, Vol. 13, p. 39 [Bold emphasis added]
It should also be noted that in 1914, the Mother and her husband at the time, Paul Richards, encouraged and helped Sri Aurobindo to publish his monthly review Arya consisting predominantly of his own yogic teachings on the evolution of consciousness via the descent of the Supermind, first published on his 42nd birthday. The Arya continued through 1920, with its final issue in January of 1921. The serialized articles therein were later published in book form, including The Life Divine, The Secret of the Veda, The Synthesis of Yoga.

After 11 months in Pondicherry helping with Arya, the Mother subsequently spent four or five years in Japan with her husband. She returned to Sri Aurobindo and Pondicherry for good on 24 April 1920. According to the Mother, during their reunion, both she and Sri Aurobindo had the same thought, “Now the Realisation will be accomplished.”8 The fuller story of the Mother’s initiation into her yoga with Sri Aurobindo is told in a documentary slideshow put out by the Sri Aurobindo International Centre of Education, in conjunction with the 100th anniversary (24 April 2020) of the Mother’s return to Pondicherry to take her seat beside Sri Aurobindo.

Some six years later,9 on 24 November 1926 Sri Aurobindo experienced the descent of Krishna – the 8th Avatar of Vishnu – into his body. From that point onward, he retired to his room, stopped receiving visitors, handed Ashram operations over to the Mother, and focused on doing “an intensive sadhana for the descent of the Supermind … upon earth”. (The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 3, 2 Aug 1962, pp. 299-301) This 24 November 1926 date was subsequently known as Sri Aurobindo’s Siddhi Day, and it is also considered to be the official foundation of the Sri Aurobindo Ashram.

Two days later, on 26 November 1926, the Mother announced that the “Divine principle of  Immortality” had been “brought down” (as described by KD Sethna), and that day became known as “Immortality Day” at the Sri Aurobindo Ashram.  
“[The Mother] declared that a most important and fundamental event had occurred but it was both very sacred and secret. She asked for some small glass bottles. When they were brought, she poured the occultly charged water into them and gave them to those who [were] there. According to her, the divine principle of Immortality had been brought down on that day.”  
“How should we understand the message of the event? Just as November 24 promised with the descent of the delegate consciousness of the Supermind the advent of the true Supramental Divinity, November 26 confirmed to the very last particular of supramentalisation what the earlier occasion had betokened in general: the very last particular is the divinisation of the body. In Indian spirituality, from the beginning, Immortality has stood for much more than personal survival of physical death: it has stood for a realisation of the Divine Consciousness which is infinite and eternal, the supreme God-Self both within and beyond the changeful series of birth and death in which our common terrestrial existence is caught. Immortality, in the Integral Yoga of Sri Aurobindo, necessarily includes this experience. When the Overmind came down into his body and the Mother's, the highest range of past realisation of the Immortal Being was compassed not only in the inner consciousness but also in the outermost, with wonderful consequences in the material sheath itself and an earnest [i.e. pledge] of the full and final result which would come by the arrival of the Supramental Truth. The total earnest of the Godlike future was revealed on November 26—a signal almost incredible to the human mind haunted and obsessed by millennia of mortality. That is why the Mother considered the revelation not only sacred but secret and that is why the memory of it was allowed to hide in the background.” – KD Sethna, “Immortality Day”, “The Ashram’s Spiritual History”, [bold emphasis and text in brackets added]
On 5 December 1950, Sri Aurobindo passed at the age of 78. The Mother gave the following account of the deliberateness of his departure, hinting of his imminent return, which I will discuss in Part Four.
“You see, [Sri Aurobindo] had decided to go. But he didn't want me to know that he was doing it deliberately; he knew that if for a single moment I knew he was doing it deliberately, I would have reacted with such a violence that he would not have been able to leave! 
“And he did this... he bore it all as if it were some unconsciousness, an ordinary illness, simply to keep me from knowing – and he left at the very moment he had to leave. But...
“And I couldn't even imagine he was gone once he had gone, just there, in front of me – it seemed so far away... And then afterwards, when he came out of his body and entered into mine, I understood it all... It's fantastic. 
“It's... it's absolutely superhuman. There's not one human being capable of doing such a thing. And what... what a mastery of his body – absolute, absolute! 
“And when it came to others... he could remove an illness like that (gesture, as if Mother were calmly extracting an illness from the body with her fingertips). That happened to you once, didn't it? You said that I had done this for you – but it wasn't me; he was the one who did it... He could give you peace in the mind in the same way (Mother brushes her hand across her forehead). You see, his actions were absolutely... On others, it had all the characteristics of a total mastery... Absolutely superhuman. 
“One day, he'll tell you all this himself.  
“Now I understand it. 
“It's tre-men-dous. 
“Satprem: I would like very much to ask you something... Why did he have to go? 
“Ah! That can't be told.  
(long silence) 
“I can tell you why, but in a purely superficial way... Because for him to do IMMEDIATELY – without leaving his body, that is – what he had to do, well... 
“We can put it this way: the world was not ready. But to tell you the truth, it was the totality of things around him that was not ready. So when he SAW this (I only understood this afterwards), he saw that it would go much faster if he were not there. 
“And he was ABSOLUTELY right, it was true. 
“Once I saw that, I accepted. When I saw it, when he made me understand, I accepted; otherwise... 
“There was a difficult period. 
“It wasn't long, but it was difficult. 
“When he left, I said twelve days, twelve days. And truly, I gave it twelve days, twelve days to see if the entire Work... Outwardly, I said, “After twelve days I will tell you if the Ashram (the Ashram was nothing but a symbol, of course), if the Ashram will continue or if it is finished.” 
“And later (I don't know – it didn't take twelve days; I said that on December 9, and on the 12th it was all decided – seen, clear and understood), on the 12th, I saw people, I saw a few people. However, we began all the activities again only after 12 days from December 5. But it was decided on the 12th. 
“Everything was left hanging until the moment he made me understand the COMPLETE thing, in its entirety... But that's for later on. 
“He himself will tell you, it's true – later on. – The Mother, The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 1, 19 October 1960
On 29 February 1956, five years and a few months after Sri Aurobindo’s 5 December 1950 passing, the Mother experienced and announced what she called the Supramental Manifestation.
“This evening the Divine Presence, concrete and material, was there present amongst you. I had a form of living gold, bigger than the universe, and I was facing a huge and massive golden door which separated the world from the Divine.
“As I looked at the door, I knew and willed, in a single movement of consciousness, that "the time has come", and lifting with both hands a mighty golden hammer I struck one blow, one single blow on the door and the door was shattered to pieces.
“Then the supramental Light and Force and Consciousness rushed down upon earth in an uninterrupted flow.” – The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 1, 29 February 1956 
“Lord, Thou hast willed, and I execute:
A new light breaks upon the earth,
A new world is born.
The things that were promised are fulfilled.”
The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 1, 23 April 1956  
“The manifestation of the Supramental upon earth is no more a promise but a living fact, a reality. It is at work here, and one day will come when the most blind, the most unconscious, even the most unwilling shall be obliged to recognise it.” ‒ The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 1, 24 April 1956 

In April of 1956, the Mother clarified that it could take thousands of years for the seed of the Supramental Manifestation (which Sri Aurobindo established) to fully manifest or mature, complete with its new forms and structures and full range of possibilities. (The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 1, 2 May 1956)

Later that same year on Sri Aurobindo’s birthday, which is the same day the “Feast of the Assumption” is celebrated, the Mother was asked, “Is there any connection between the Feast of the Assumption in the Catholic Church and the date of Sri Aurobindo’s birth?” Her response was:
“Yes. And he has also said it himself.10 The Assumption of the Virgin Mary is the divinisation of Matter. And this is the aim of the last Avatar.” – 15 August 1956, Collected Works of the Mother, Vol. 8, p. 269 
On 1 January 1969 the Mother experienced what she referred to as the “descent of the superman consciousness” and the “presence of a new consciousness”.11 On 5 February 1969 the Mother described her aspiration to know “Where and how does this consciousness act?” or what its action would be.12 The answer she was given to help her “learn a little the future way”, revealed a mathematical organization and action of the “superman consciousness”. 
“I remember a vision of the night in which I did a work with numbers and put the numbers – figures and groups of figures – in a certain position…. 
“It was the “ciphered” expression – the ciphered expression of the application to life in a coming realization: the expression of the life ahead, but not very far ahead; for instance, in the following century, the century starting now. … all those figures were organizing themselves and determining future events. … 
“It wasn’t the “conception” of a work, it was THE work itself…. It was the organization of those groups of figures that determined the events and the ORDER of events (especially the order of events) and their location on earth…. 
[I had] a sort of aspiration to know what the functioning would be, the action in the superman consciousness. I said, “Having this consciousness around oneself [like a rampart] is very fine, but one must also know what changes there will be in the body’s functioning, in the work, in one’s workings.” So then, this experience [of the figures] was like an answer to make me learn a little the future way… 
“It must be an activity of this [superman] consciousness, because it’s not something I’ve had for a long time…. 
“This body RECEIVES things. It receives them. It doesn’t feel it’s … I don’t know how to explain (the thought isn’t working). All of a sudden it felt the need to know the effect this [superman] consciousness will have on the consciousness here, how it will work. And then, for you, I wondered, “Where and how does this consciousness act?” And that’s why I’ve had this experience [of figures].” – The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 10, 5 February 1969
That same year, on 19 November 1969 the Mother had an experience which gave her a new understanding of the Supramental Consciousness or Unity Consciousness, and of the work which was “now” (from 1969) being accomplished in the Evolutionary Play.
“In the Supreme it's a unity that contains all possibilities perfectly united, without differentiation. The creation is, so to speak, the projection of all that makes up that unity, by dividing all opposites, that is to say, by separating (that's what was caught by those who said that creation is separation)…. 
“All together, all of it together is a perfect unity, immutable and... indissoluble. The creation is the separation of all that “makes up” this unity – we might call it the division of the consciousness – the division of the consciousness, which starts from unity conscious of its unity to arrive at unity conscious of its multiplicity IN UNITY. 
“So then, this route is what, for us – for the fragments – is expressed as space and time. 
“And for us as we are, each point of this Consciousness has the possibility of being conscious of itself AND conscious of the original Unity. And that's the work now being accomplished, that is to say, each infinitesimal element of this Consciousness, while retaining this state of consciousness, is now recapturing the total original state of consciousness – the result is the original Consciousness conscious of its Unity AND conscious of the whole play: all the innumerable elements of this Unity. So for us, it gets expressed as the sense of time: going from the Inconscient to this state of consciousness. And the Inconscient is the projection of the primeval Unity (if we may say so – all those words are completely stupid), of the essential unity unconscious of its own Unity – that's the Inconscient. And this Inconscient is growing increasingly conscious in beings who are conscious of their infinitesimal existence and AT THE SAME TIME – through what we call progress or evolution or transformation – who manage to be conscious of the original Unity
“And that, as it was seen, explained everything. – The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 10, 19 Nov. 1969 [Bold emphasis added]
At the end of this same agenda entry the Mother said:
“The whole is brought with lightning speed toward the consciousness that will be this Consciousness of the point and the whole at the same time.”
She then wrote down the date 19 November 1969 and commented:
“The figure 9 has something to do with all this .... There are so many things we don't know!” [Bold emphasis added]
Thea's model of the Mother's Temple
vision, The New Way, p. 202
On the last day of 1969 and for 17 days into 1970, the Mother received and recorded a vision of a divine temple – to be known as The Mother’s Temple (aka the Matrimandir). The temple she saw was 24 meters wide, 12-sided, with 12 columns, and with no other light entering except for a 60 cm opening in the apex of the temple, from which a 15.20 meter column of light descended, illuminating a central translucent globe, resting on a marble pedestal featuring Sri Aurobindo’s satkona symbol. This luminous core or nucleus of the temple, which the Mother referred to as “the symbol of the future realisation”, rested upon a 3-meter-wide, horizontal replication of the Mother’s 12-petal Symbol.

During those 18 days, the Mother (91, going on 92 at the time) enlisted an engineer, Udar Pinto, to draw the blueprints of the measurements and features of the temple as she saw it. However, as fate would have it, the architects involved imposed their own ideas and changes upon the temple, completely distorting the Vedic and Supramental sense and symbolism of the Mother’s sacred architecture.13 

The First Years of Thea’s Yoga

Thea was born on 5 January 1938 in Brooklyn, New York. She married Chilean diplomat Fernando Bachelet at the age of 18 in 1956, and had two children (1958 & 1963). In one of her first responses to me in 2001, she indicated that 1958 marked a big shift in her consciousness, which changed everything for her.
"I resided for nine months at the University of Virginia, decades before you reached there. On 6 October 1958, I had my first major EXPERIENCE there. It changed everything, planted a seed, that grew and erupted above the soil of my consciousness some years later." – Thea, 10 November 2001
Thea wrote about this experience in Charlottesville, involving the birth of her first child (9 months after her own birthday), in The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1.
"It was beyond all question a 'superhuman being' or God himself speaking, though I had all along been sustaining vehemently that God 'didn't exist', or that at best his existence was highly doubtful. The experience was therefore all the more significant since it came so entirely unexpectedly; for in the midst of labour and just as the child was about to be born, my whole being, especially each cell of my body, became the living and pulsating essence of some intensely blissful vibration….
"The 'message' I had received from the 'being' seemed to confirm this as well. 'This is the reason why you were born a woman,' I had been told….
"[M]any years later I came to understand the profound significance for me in this apparently banal message. It contained the key to my entire destiny. It would encapsulate the purpose of my life and work." (pp. 20-21)
From 1956-1971 Thea also lived in Santiago, Chile; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Stockholm, Sweden and Rome, Italy. Her studies of astrology, philosophy, cosmology and mysticism began in 1965.

In February of 1970, soon after the Mother’s powerful experience of the “action of the superman consciousness” and her powerful vision of the 12-pillared temple, Thea (living in Rome at the age of 32) began receiving and writing her first book, The Magical Carousel – a highly symbolic fairy tale of two children journeying through the 12-month Zodiac. She wrote about this transmission of gnosis in her autobiography:
“I was totally overtaken by [a] flood of inspiration which took hold of me and kept me in a state of rapture for the entire month it took to write the book. The story was as if projected on a screen in my forehead, between my eyebrows. All I had to do was to follow this projection and record what I 'saw'.” – The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, p. 27  
“[The Magical Carousel] was a biography which explained the journey of the soul and its uncovering and was concerned with nothing else; as it also explained the journey of all souls in this manifestation, because the zodiac is a script both for the individual as well as a key to understand the collective soul in its flowering
The means to decipher the text resided in the number 9.” – Ibid., p. 29 [Bold emphasis added]
The next year on 13 March 1971, Thea was given A Practical Guide to Integral Yoga by a friend. Before receiving this book, she had never heard of or known of the yoga of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. She was also studying the yoga of Ramakrishna (Vivekananda’s guru) at that time. The following month, Thea had the following experience:
“[A] subtle veil was rent inside and a connection was made inwardly, somehow releasing an occult force in my being. I was totally ignorant of such things, astrology being different from occult practices. It was mathematical, an art of precision. But the events that followed, though of an intriguing and sometimes marvellous nature, often filled me with an overpowering sense of fear because of my ignorance of what was really taking place. However, this was also part of the plan, I later came to realise: my unknowing was a key element to secure the perfection of a baffling and mysterious design that was to bring about a radical transformation and a complete shift in my destiny. – Ibid., pp. 46-47
At that point Thea experienced a unique initiation and interactive relationship with the unseen “Divine Mother” who was arranging all aspects of her life and moving “people about like pawns on a chessboard for its own purposes, to carry out an 'initiation…'.” (Ibid., p. 50) She began corresponding with the actual Mother of Pondicherry in June of 1971, and asked (in a letter) for the Mother to arrange circumstances so that she and her son could travel to Pondicherry to meet her. And so it came to pass. Via a series of divinely organized circumstances, Thea (at the age of 33) and her son (at the age of 7) traveled to India, arriving in Bombay (Mumbai) on 28 September 1971 and in Pondicherry on 29 September 1971. These dates happened to be the 9th and 10th days of the Durga Festival, the 10th day of which is celebrated as the victory of the Divine Mother.14 Thea and her son subsequently met the Mother for the first time on 8 October 1971. This 9-power date (and the 9-power meeting time of 9:45 am) was set by the Mother. All of this and the story of what happened next is told in The Tenth Day of Victory, Vols. 1 & 2. What could not yet be told in that autobiography was that Thea would pass exactly 45 years and one day after her meeting with the Mother, on 9 October 2016 (9.10.2016) – emphasizing not only the number 9 but also 10, and thus the One.

What I want to stress here, is that via her intensive initiation into the Supramental Yoga, Thea was given (or made conscious of) certain keys of gnosis which enabled her to progressively see, understand and write about the Supramental Descent and Manifestation in cosmological terms which addressed how the Supramental Consciousness-Force organized itself on Earth, how it manifests with mathematical and all-encompassing precision and can be seen in the unfolding of events in the cyclical course of Time. For all who “have eyes to see”, Thea’s work is intimately connected to “the descent of the superman consciousness” that the Mother experienced in 1969, as it serves to provide individuals with the tools needed to cultivate a direct experience of and the capacity to SEE the Supramental (or Divine) action and organization in the circumstances of life. Anyone who has studied Thea’s work knows that these same tools serve to cultivate (literally to grow) the consciousness of “the point and the whole at the same time” in one’s being; and that “the figure 9 has something to do with all this” as the Mother indicated. In fact, a key part of Thea’s initiation in the 9-power year of 1971 involved seeing the importance of the number 9, in her life* and in relation to her interactions with the Mother.15

In 1985, Thea wrote an article entitled “The Supramental Change”, discussing not only the monumental breakthough of the Supramental Manifestation in 1956, but also the monumental breakthough in 1971 which “[consolidated] the organisational capacity of Supermind on Earth.” 
“The Supramental Manifestation has reached a certain point in its unveiling which renders it easily recognisable. Daily the active presence of Supermind is becoming more and more evident in world affairs. However, this is an entirely new manifestation. That is, Supermind itself is not new, properly speaking, for it is the upholding light of the material creation, the involved ‘seed’ in the passage of the Unmanifest to the Manifest creation, and from then onward experiencing a progressive unveiling. But what is new in the conscious experience of humanity is the manner in which this involved Light expresses itself in the course of evolution. Or, to use Sri Aurobindo’s words, how it will be “organised for Earth use”. At the time Sri Aurobindo wrote these words, this organisation had not been made apparent; Supermind had not manifested, had not crossed the threshold where it stood as an upholding but concealed power, to become the overt force in control of evolution and providing its own body of knowledge by which the human being could follow its action and become a conscious participant in the work of establishing a gnostic society on the globe under its aegis
“However, in 1956 an event occurred that signalled the momentous passage to this overt expression. This happened on 29 February, 1956 and was called the Supramental Manifestation Day by the Mother. In an especially significant experience that day, it was brought to her awareness that ‘the time has come’. And these were the very words she heard in the midst of this important event which indicated to her that the long awaited manifestation of Supermind was now a concrete fact of the evolutionary mechanism. Since that time, the work initiated by Sri Aurobindo has been accelerating the emergence of an entirely new body of knowledge by which the human being can ‘measure’ its action in the world. 
“In 1971, another threshold was reached and a further breakthrough was made to consolidate the organisational capacity of Supermind on Earth.… 
“[I]n 1969, the time was fast approaching for the complementary action from below to begin. That ‘bridge’ was to come into existence, whereby these two dimensions could be connected for the purpose of activating the new Power and allowing it to reveal its control over events… (‘above all the order of events’). It was in 1971 that the ‘power from below’, or the Third, was incorporated in order to forge this bridge. The immediate results were a perceptible acceleration in the Supramental Manifestation.” – Thea, “The Supramental Change”, Sept. 1985, The Vishaal Newsletter, Vol. 0, Issue 1
This 1971 breakthrough is not only a reference to the initiation or beginning of Thea’s role as the third stage of the Supramental Descent, but to the beginning of the fourth stage of the descent as well.16 This fourth stage, of which Thea was not aware until 1976, will be discussed in Part Four.

Approximately four months after her arrival in Pondicherry, Thea had a pivotal experience of being a child in the womb of the Mother. 
“[The experience] developed into a realisation of the triune aspect of creation. It's delight lay in the joining of three elements, mother, father and child. This was representative of everything in creation, of the means by which any creation in matter can ensue. These triune energies were one, and they were joined. The child knows this, the mother knows it, and the father supports the two. I had become that Child within this cosmic Womb of the Mother – that very Mother physically incarnated and residing just a short distance from where this experience was transpiring. There was no difference between the two…. 
“It was the realisation of the Trinity: the Three [Father, Mother and Child] in One.… 
“From the very first experiences which drew me to India, the ‘Divine Mother' laid emphasis on the Trinity, represented in our world of measure as the numbers 9, 6, and 3. Now, with this experience, I realised the perfection of the 3, which when manifested in creation, becomes the 9, or is directly linked to it. And this play was within the cosmic Womb of the 6, the Mother. In effect, this was the start of the descent of a body of knowledge which was rooted in the realisation of the triune nature of God, a creation in matter which has its structural support in this triadic manifestation.” – Thea, The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, pp. 152-54 
This appears to be the time when Thea came to see that the yoga of Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and herself followed the numeric pattern, formula or trinity of 9, 6 and 3 (Father, Mother and Child/Daughter), corresponding to the number power of each of their birth years.
Thea’s knowledge of this “formula” is presented in the structure and content of her 1975 book, The Gnostic Circle, consisting of four sections, entitled: “9 The Transcendent”, “6 The Cosmic”, “3 The Individual” and “0 The Centre”. In this book, she identified herself as the “Third Principle” of this descending formula, not by name, but rather by including her birth year (TGC, p. 273).17

As demonstrated in Thea’s page-273 image from The Gnostic Circle (replicated to the right), she saw that the numbers 9-6-3 not only corresponded to Sri Aurobindo, the Mother and herself, but also to the Trinity of the Transcendent, Cosmic and Individual divine powers which Sri Aurobindo endeavored to “bring down” and embody in his own being, through his intensive yogic sadhana.
“A harmonization of all three [Transcendent, Cosmic and Individual] becomes imperative. I have to bring it down, and from where shall I bring it down –  since it is not yet manifested in the cosmic formula – if not from the unmanifest Transcendence, which I must reach and realise? I have to bring it into the cosmic formula and, if so, I must realise the cosmic Divine and become conscious of the cosmic self and the cosmic forces. But I have to embody it here, – otherwise it is left as an influence only and not a thing fixed in the physical world, and it is through the Divine in the individual alone that this can be done.”  – Sri Aurobindo, Letters on Yoga I, CWSA, Vol. 28, p. 9
On 9.9.1972, Thea wrote the Mother:
“Mother, it is incredible! All has come, the nights are full of revelations. Truly incredible. I have understood the whole of It, all the symbols, living things, not abstractions. Ignorance is the abstraction. The joy is immense. All the work done so far was true, had its basis in Truth, but now there is a variation, with this understanding everything has come 'into focus'. Truly wonderful. The threads ... I could not put them together: the 9, supermind, the square, your [twelve-petalled] symbol, above all the circle. How could they all fit? They do, because all has its origin in That. And the name THEA,18 of course ... it all fits. The first impulse was to tell the students ... but really there can be no words … it is for them to discover. All one could do would be to draw the number 9, or the circle and then remain silent.” – Thea, The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, p. 205
The Mother simply signed Thea’s letter, wrote, “Blessings”, and sent it back to her. Several of Thea’s letters to the Mother are documented in The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1. The Mother’s responses to Thea constituted some acknowledgement of receipt. There was no objective confirmation of Thea’s growing sense and understanding of her place in the Supramental Descent. I have shared the above excerpt from one such letter to underscore the fact that the descent of knowledge Thea was receiving was based on the geometry and math of the circle. She clearly understood that our number system must be seen in terms of the circle (i.e. not linearly). This needs to be emphasized because without the understanding of the geometry of the 9 in relation to the geometry of the circle, there could be no restoration of the Sanatana Dharma (Eternal Wisdom) of the ancient Vedic Rishis which was the yogic adesh or command given to Sri Aurobindo in 1908 in Alipore Jail. Equally, without this understanding, it is impossible to see and become conscious of the Supramental Consciousness-Force of the Soul meticulously organizing its own victories in our evolutionary play taking place within the unified field (kshetra) of Time and Space.  
“We graduate from linear to spherical; and Death is no more since it is itself transformed. …This geometric shift, linear to spherical, is what allows for ‘each thing to be put in its place’. It can only happen in an integral, spherical plan. The circle of 360 degrees has to be completed or closed at the 0/9 summit. Until the Supramental Descent of our times, [evolution] has not been lived consciously within the full circle in spite of individual breakthroughs. ...The tool [of bringing evolution through the mental/linear mode to the spherical] is Supermind, the Truth-Consciousness.” – Thea, Chronicles of the Inner Chamber, Update 3, “A Tale of Two Towers: Transforming the Linear”, 1 Nov. 2004 [Bold and italic emphasis found in original text]
The Mother passed on 17 November 1973, at the age of 95 and 9 months.19 Thea reported receiving a powerful transmission of supramental knowledge from the Mother in the months before her passing:
“During the time [the Mother] was preparing her departure she had been pouring out precise elements of a knowledge which I knew would reveal the heart of the supramental creation. In a sense this was her legacy. It was not an ashram, a township, a host of disciples, and all the rest. This alone was the true heritage. With that alone could the work be completed…. 
“In the weeks following the Mother's passing I felt the impact of what I had experienced before her as she lay in state. I realised that a new type of energy had come into me. At the time it seemed to be a Yoga Shakti for work, or more precisely, the Work. For her work, for Sri Aurobindo's work. Everything that had come to me by way of knowledge concerning the future of their work in the world in the months prior to her passing, seemed now to acquire a certain determined focus. All the threads of the line of knowledge for the execution of this work were coming together; and this integration appeared to be connected to the power I had received at the Mother's passing. It gave me an unbounded energy.” – Thea, The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, pp. 302, 308 
Soon thereafter, in January of 1974, Thea began writing The Gnostic Circle based on the elements of knowledge that she had been bequeathed with throughout her initiation and in the months before the Mother’s passing. 
“[T]he Gnostic Circle [was] one of the very last 'gifts' I received from the Mother before her passing. Since this flow of higher knowledge had come from her, when she left I realised how alone I was with these 'gifts'. I did not see them as having been 'keys' with which I could carry out the tasks allotted to me as a member of the line. But that is exactly what they were: keys of Gnosis by which I could carry forward the next stage of the Work.” – Ibid., p. 278
At some point in 1974 (no exact date given), Thea was shown the original blueprint of the Mother’s 1970-71 temple design by Auroville architect Piero Cicionesi, who told her that “everything has been changed.” He brought Thea’s attention to the 15.20 meter height of the temple wondering why the Mother had given THAT particular measure. Thea did not know in that moment but voiced her opinion that it did not matter why, they should just build it like the Mother had seen it and measured it out, and trust that the knowledge of the meaning would eventually come. That night, based on her understanding of the connection between the 12 months of the Earth’s year and the 12-sided inner chamber of the temple with its 12 pillars, Thea divided 365 (the number of days in the year) by 24 (the given diameter of the Mother’s Temple and the number of hours in the day), and the result was 15.20.20

The Mother had clearly never explained this connection between the sacred geometry of the Temple and the Year to anyone. No one but Thea possessed the knowledge base and consciousness to understand the significance of these sacred measurements, both of which were being discarded by the builders in Auroville. Thea subsequently tried her best to educate the architects and the people of Pondicherry and Auroville towards the goal of honoring and building of the Mother’s original vision, to no avail. According to Thea’s autobiography, the cementing of four pillars of the temple’s construction in early July of 1975 (the 4.5 point of the ennead from 1971-1980) were ‘the first point of no return’ for the Auroville temple because these pillars encroached upon the space (the 24m diameter) of the Inner Chamber.

In Chronicles of the Inner Chamber Thea wrote that the conclusive “point of no return” was in 1976. I have not found a specific date for this conclusive point in Thea’s writings. Perhaps it was in November of 1976 when the concrete of the Inner Chamber was poured, finalizing the mismeasure or distortion of the sacred 24 meter diameter of the Mother’s Temple.   
“After several years almost entirely dedicated to [the endeavor of preventing the distortion of Mother’s Temple], the construction reached the point of no return (1976). The architects had had their way and no rectification was possible. Most deplorable was the fact that they consistently refused to attend meetings that were convened to discuss the matter, even when the changes were made known…. – Thea, “Genesis of the Mother’s Temple”, Chronicles of the Inner Chamber, p. xiv
I will end Part Three with Thea’s commentary regarding the central role the Mother’s Temple vision played in her own yoga.
“By the beginning of 1976 it was clear that [the Mother’s] revelation of the Matrimandir's inner chamber was likely to be the focus of my yogic life. I considered this legacy to be a supreme blessing because without the Mother's presence her plan served me as a touchstone: it would keep me both focused and on track. What was clear even in those early days was that the Yoga I was engaged in had been mapped out, as it were; and the tools of Knowledge the Mother had bequeathed were the means to carry out this process according to a specific plan. Indeed, the plan of her inner chamber graphically revealed what that process was to bring about.” – Thea, The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 2 p. 256 [Bold emphasis added]
In Part Four I will discuss what that process did bring about, which was Thea’s March 1976 revelation of Sri Aurobindo’s rebirth, as “written” in the sacred geometry of the Mother’s Temple. 

*Correction made: I originally wrote that Thea was the 9th child of her family, which was incorrect. She was the sixth in a family of 9. The accurate account is found The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1 wherein Thea wrote: "I was the 9th member of my family; I am forced to include an aunt along with my parents since she lived permanently with us and was virtually a second mother. There were therefore these three - a sort of triad - and then followed 6 children of whom I was the last. My mother's birth date itself equalled 9." (p. 56)

2 Letters on Himself, CWSA, Vol. 35, p. 238.
4 Ibid., though not found in the link above, See alternative link: Sri Aurobindo in Baroda, p. 30.
5 Siddhartha Dash, “Sri Aurobindo and Freedom of India”, Orissa Review, August 2007.
6 India gained its independence on Sri Aurobindo’s 75th birthday (15 August 1947). Regarding this timing, he wrote, “I take this coincidence, not as a fortuitous accident, but as the sanction and seal of the Divine Force that guides my steps on the work with which I began life, the beginning of its full fruition.” – Sri Aurobindo, 15th of August 1947 
7 Sri Aurobindo, Autobiographical Notes and Other Writings of Historical Interest, CWSA, Vol. 36, p. 9.
8 The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 2, 20 December 1961.
9 Some may have noticed that there is a pulse of 6 years in the years I have mentioned: 6 years between the birth years of Sri Aurobindo (1872) and the Mother (1878); 6 years between 1908 (Sri Aurobindo’s arrest) and 1914 (the year of his meeting of the Mother); and 6 years between 1914 and 1920, the Mother returned to Pondicherry. Subsequently, 1926 was the year of Sri Aurobindo’s Siddhi Day. In the 144-year span from Sri Aurobindo’s birth to  Thea’s death, each 6 years is equivalent to 1 hour of the 24-hour day. See Geometric Keys of Vedic Wisdom, Appendix for a visual of this 144-year cycle and 6-year pulse.
10According to Ashok Ganguli, August 30, 1926 Sri Aurobindo had said that the true significance of August 15 is the divinization of matter and it goes back to the mystical event of the "Assumption of Virgin Mary" according to which Christ's Mother left the earth and rose, with her earthly body, to Heaven.” – See “15 August – an Eternal Birth”.
11 See: The Mother’s Agenda, Vol. 10, 4 Jan 1969 and 8 January 1969.
12 I was born 7 days later, on 12 February 1969.
14 As told in Geometric Keys of Vedic Wisdom, 31 years later, circumstances astonishingly arranged themselves so that I, in turn, would meet Thea (31 years my elder) for the first time at the age of 33 on 14 October 2002 – the 9th Night of the 2002 Durga Puja at her center in Kodaikanal, India, 9 months and 9 days after her own birthday (which she told me on the Tenth Day of the festival).
15 The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, pp. 29, 56-57, 119, 171, 309-10.
16 “1971 would then be the moment when the third and fourth stages began, since it was the 15th year after the Supramental Manifestation of 1956.” – Thea, The New Way, Vols. 1&2, p. 151.
17 In March of 1976, Thea became aware of the addition of the 1 to this formula – the Immanent One or Divine Son Agni born of the Triadic Divine Descent. She saw this birth of the One, represented by the number sequence 9/6/3-0/1. She referred to this 1 as “the Fourth”, which I will discuss in Part Four. Thea’s writings on this topic can be found in The New Way, Vols. 1&2 and The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 2.
18 The Greek letters Θεα  (Th – E – A) are equivalent to the numbers 9-5-1 which Thea saw as the Divine Trinity of the zero point of each fire sign of the 12-sign Zodiac (the 9th sign Sagittarius, the 5th sign Leo, and the 1st sign Aries), corresponding to the 9-6-3 Trinity of the Circle of 9. Thea understood her name as follows:
“Thea is the Greek word for goddess. But it has another more significant meaning which may be translated as 'the act of seeing'. It is in this context that the name was given to me as a sacred key of knowledge. Because of this significance, it was truly my name since the 'act of seeing' was revealed to be the essence of my destiny.” – Thea, The Tenth Day of Victory, Vol. 1, p. 223. 
19 95 years and 269 days to be exact. 269 days is actually one day short of 9 x 30 days, or the Capricorn Cardinal point of the Mother’s year, according to the Gnostic Circle.
20 365 divided by 24 is 15.208333…. Neither the Mother nor Thea rounded the second decimal place up to 1.

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