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The Mother


Volume 2

June 6, 1961

(Mother arrives looking weary. Satprem asks if she is tired.)

No.... I had finished reading the Veda and wanted to take up The Life Divine, but as I had never read On Himself,1 I chose it instead. I read the first chapter dealing with his life in England and to me it all seemed.... Oh, why speak of all these things in connection with Sri Aurobindo? Why? I know quite well that he himself has replied – or rather rectified inexact things people had said about him – but it made such a painful impression on me! Such a painful impression.

Something must definitely be done which is free of that whole useless jumble about who his father was and so forth – pah! I don't like that sort of thing.

Yes, it's a grab-bag of odds and ends – very important letters are mixed in with all sorts of pointlessness. Take the ICS. examination, for instance – they seem to be pleading Sri Aurobindo's case! It's ridiculous.2

Yes, I wasn't looking after anything when that was published [in 1953]. It has given me something like a malaise.

*   *

(After the work, Mother remains absorbed for a long time, then speaks.)

What is bewildering is the subtlety of the problem.

Take absolutely identical circumstances: the same outer circumstances, the same inner circumstances – the “psychological condition” is the same; circumstances of life, the same; events, the same; people, no appreciable difference. Identical circumstances, a few hours – not even a day – apart. And in one case, the body – that is, the cellular consciousness – feels a sort of eurhythmy and general harmony, everything dovetails in such a marvelous way, without rubbing, without friction – everything functions and organizes itself in a total harmony. It's a peace and a joy (without the vital intensity, of course – it's something physical). All, all is so harmonious and truly you feel a sense of the divine organization of everything, of all the cells – all is marvelous and the body feels well. Then in the other case... everything is the same, the consciousness is the same and... something escapes – the perception of harmony is no longer there. For what reason? One doesn't understand anymore. And then the body begins to function wrongly. Yet everything is absolutely identical – mental conditions, vital conditions, physical conditions, all identical – and suddenly it all seems... meaningless. One still has the consciousness, the full consciousness of the divine Presence, and... one senses somewhere something escaping, and all becomes... it's like running after something that escapes. Things become meaningless. In absolutely identical conditions – even the movements of the body (functional movements, I mean) may be identical, but they are felt to be disharmonious (these words are much too crude, it's more subtle than that), meaningless, disharmonious. And what escapes? You can't make it out.

What is it?

Yesterday it was all so marvelous! Yet everything was identical, absolutely identical, down to the least detail.

Strangely, it happened after reading that first chapter of On Himself; while reading I felt a sort of malaise in my body, so slight that it was almost imperceptible, but still a malaise – and it lasted through the night. Why? Nothing had changed in the consciousness.

More and more I have the impression of – what? How can it be explained? A question of vibrations in Matter. It's incomprehensible, completely eluding all mental law, all psychological law: a self-existent something.

So many question marks!

The more one goes into it in detail, the more mysterious it becomes. One always thinks one has grasped it; when one talks about such things3 one is being very nice, one seems to know something, one talks... but when it comes to putting it into practice!...

It's so subtle! It could almost be.... It's almost like being on the border between two worlds. It's the same world and it's – is it two aspects of this world? I can't even say that. Yet it's the SAME world; all is the Lord, He and nothing but He, only it's.... And so subtle, so subtle: if you go like this (Mother tilts her hand slightly to the right), it's perfectly harmonious; if you go like that (Mother tilts her hand slightly to the left), oof! It's... it's at once absurd, meaningless, and laborious, painful. But it's the SAME thing! It's all the same thing.

What is it?

There is such a strong impression of facing something which completely escapes comprehension, reason, intelligence, everything mental or intellectual (even the most elevated); it's not that, it's.... And then truly, if you stand back from it and employ big words, you would say, “All this (Mother tilts her hand to one side) is Truth, and all that (she tilts her hand to the other side) is Falsehood” – but it's the SAME thing! In one case, you have the sense of being carried – not only the body but the entire world, all circumstances – carried, floating in a beatific light towards an eternal Realization; and in the other case, it's like this (Mother makes a gesture of being burdened), deadening, heavy, sorrowful – exactly the same thing! Almost the same material vibrations.

And it's so subtle, so incomprehensible – there's a distinct impression of it TOTALLY eluding even the highest conscious will. What is it? What is it?

If we found that, perhaps we would have it all – the total Secret.


That must have been how Truth became Falsehood. But “how” – what is that “how”?


And why did reading that book [On Himself] give me this malaise?

Oh, it was so lovely yesterday! The whole day – and all, all, all was the same as now – all the circumstances, the condition of the body, everything. It can't even be said that in one case the body was well and in the other it wasn't – it isn't true, it was all the same thing, all was the same. But in one case you float – you float in a beatific light which carries you for all Eternity; and in the other case you seem to be walking through shifting sands... without seeing clearly, without understanding – deadened, absolutely deadened.

That's why I had difficulty listening to you just now [during the work], because since last night I have been constantly facing this problem, and all morning long I've had to... you know, do like this (Mother clenches her fist, as though getting a grip on herself) in order to come here and listen. I didn't feel like seeing anyone, doing anything... only staying like this (Mother keeps still, her arms at her sides) until that problem is willing to explain itself.

But if you had seen me yesterday.... I would probably have said nothing, but it was so lovely! Exactly the same thing, the same people, the same circumstances, the same conditions in the body. Everything, everything was the same.

But wasn't it universal waves – wasn't this malaise something cosmic rather than personal?

Yes, of course! It's the universal Problem. That is my sole concern.

Something that veils?

I am up against this fact: how did Truth become Falsehood? I am not asking myself intellectually – that doesn't interest me at all! It is here, in Matter, that the thing must be found.

It is double, it is double.

How did it happen? (But not just “how” as in a story: the MECHANISM). And how will we get out of it?

You see, all the things that have been told, even all the things Sri Aurobindo has said (he has said the most in Savitri), all that is necessarily... (what can it be called?) mental, the super-intellectual spiritualized mind. But it is not THAT! It's a form, it's an image, it's not... the concrete fact.


And with a sort of prescience I see that only the body can know – that's the extraordinary thing!


And when the body makes this movement (gesture of stepping back from physical appearances) – what to call it? This movement of fusion (is it “fusion”?), of no longer being a separate body, of being the Divine – there is something which.... There is a sort of abstraction of something (and even that is putting it too concretely). And sometimes it succeeds, the body floats in the Light; sometimes it's only partial. Sometimes all the inner consciousness is there, full and total – but HERE things remain as they are, stupid, stupid, utterly stupid! Blind, in shifting sands, painful (and it's not a thought, it's not even a sensation; I don't know what it is).

And THERE the conscious will can do nothing. Nothing. All it could do it has done, and it continues to do all it can at each minute, and it's nothing, it is not THAT – what is it??

That is a true Secret. How splendid it will be when it is found.

And at the same time there's a kind of prescience, like a sensation beforehand, of an omnipotence – the TRUE Omnipotence. And nothing but THAT can satisfy you, nothing else – all the rest is... nothing.

(Mother gets up to leave)

There you are, petit.

Don't worry.

After all, that's what I am here for, isn't it?! It MUST be done, it has to be done.

But it's quite a disgusting job.

All yoga, all the yogas, mon petit, are amusements. Oh, all the disciplines are joys.... But it's not THAT.

It's a nasty job.


1 Sri Aurobindo's letters on his life, his experience and his yoga.


2 Sri Aurobindo was not admitted to the Indian Civil Service because he refused to appear at the riding test which terminated the examination.


3 Mother is alluding to two extracts from Questions and Answers (dated June 19 and July 17, 1957) which she has just reviewed for inclusion in the Bulletin. In them she speaks of the causes of illness and of using the conscious will for physical development.









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