November 25, 1959
There is a difference between immortality and the deathless state. Sri Aurobindo has described it very well in Savitri.
The deathless state is what can be envisaged for the human physical body in the future: it is constant rebirth. Instead of again tumbling backwards and falling apart due to a lack of plasticity and an incapacity to adapt to the universal movement, the body is undone “futurewards,” as it were.
There is one element that remains fixed: for each type of atom, the inner organization of the elements is different, which is what creates the difference in their substance. So perhaps similarly, each individual has a different, particular way of organizing the cells of his body, and it is this particular way that persists through all the outer changes. All the rest is undone and redone, but undone in a forward thrust towards the new instead of collapsing backwards into death, and redone in a constant aspiration to follow the progressive movement of the divine Truth.
But for that, the body – the body-consciousness – must first learn to widen itself. It is indispensable, for otherwise all the cells become a kind of boiling porridge under the pressure of the supramental light.
What usually happens is that when the body reaches its maximum intensity of aspiration or of ecstasy of Love, it is unable to contain it. It becomes flat, motionless. It falls back. Things settle down – you are enriched with a new vibration, but then everything resumes its course. So you must widen yourself in order to learn to bear unflinchingly the intensities of the supramental force, to go forward always, always with the ascending movement of the divine Truth, without falling backwards into the decrepitude of the body.
That is what Sri Aurobindo means when he speaks of an intolerable ecstasy1; it is not an intolerable ecstasy: it is an unflinching ecstasy.
1 Thoughts and Aphorisms: “Cruelty transfigured becomes Love that is intolerable ecstasy...”