Then the door was shut.
She was to live for another six months, 182 days.
Two days before the “end,” she kept repeating, “I want to walk... I want to walk....”
Before my eyes, they drove twenty-five screws into her coffin. There was a ray of sun on the nape of her neck; her hands were tightly clasped together – there was such strength in those hands! Such power in that supposedly dead body. And then that fierce concentration.
She wore a white silk dress and a small blouse with gold buttons.
The long saga unfolds before my eyes – so many years with that young girl's laughter rippling through everything, and the silences of snow, the beating of wings through boundless space, and the solid fire enfolding the body like concrete love. So many mysteries. “Death is the problem given me to resolve.”
Already night and silence have fallen over the little actors, their good and evil, their sorrow and petty affairs. Tomorrow this scribe, too, will return to the flame of love whence he came, and she, to the sweetness of the Ganges. But what about men? What about History? Still millions and millions of men destined to die? Still sorrow upon sorrow? When will there be undying love? When a lovely earth?
Is it once again put off?
“A new way of dying ought to be possible,” she said in 1963. She spoke so much to me about “death” – Savitri, too, went into death to release Satyavan. But what is death?... That coffin? This tomb of gray marble where they go to place their flowers and light their incense, while going on with their petty affairs? But there, within... a mighty silence, there is a body molded of power, whose every cell has repeated year after year, second after second: OM Namo Bhagavateh, OM Namo Bhagavateh....
So, is that all? Is this the end of the story?
But Krishna in gold has shattered the chains of the old sanctuaries; rolling and frolicking, he strides along the roads of an old, laggard world, sowing chaos and dissension and confusion everywhere – the inanity and illusion of everything: science and religion, ideals and medicine to patch up the old distressed carcass; everything is crumbling and collapsing; people speak a thousand languages but no one understands anybody; the heads of states look like clowns and clowns look like seers, and everything is the same in black or white, in Chinese or Russian or American. But Krishna winks: “Just wait...” The bomb? No. It would be too childish. The end of all illusions, the end of the human illusion – this is more serious and very upsetting. What if everything was a deception? Medicine and the Holy See, Aristotle and Euclid and the perpetual duplication of the molecules of deoxyribonucleic acid – what if things did not work that way at all?... An earthquake more earthshaking than all the Hiroshima bombs put together. The mental boat shipwrecked once and for all, and man flung on an unknown shore?... The periwinkle out of its shell. The world looked so complex and awesome and mathematical in that shell. No more shell, no more “mathematics” just... just what?
The most revolutionizing revolution in the world.
Alexander and Lenin and Pompadour (and Einstein and the latest Nobel Peace Prize laureate) were so awesome... in a shell. But without the shell, it's something else.
A stupendous SOMETHING ELSE. “I am on my way to discovering the illusion that must be destroyed so that physical life can be uninterrupted.... Death is the result of a distortion of consciousness.”
What if everything were “distorted” in the mental waterhole we live in? What if all our science of life, our every step, our distance, our time, our eyes were all false? The eyes of a ladybug, then of a periwinkle, then of a man – and then the eyes of tomorrow.
Krishna in gold is breaking the old shell – the shell of good and evil, hope and despair – the shell of life and death. What if there were no more “life” and no more “death”?
Quite a staggering new look.
But unrepentant men go on reciting the Gospel of the periwinkle and burning incense on gray- marble tombs and making babies and more babies, while Krishna in gold is pulling down the ceiling – how are they going to awake from it all?
In that tomb, some thousands and millions of cells are repeating the Mantra, tirelessly, relentlessly – a new vibration is wearing down the partition walls of the world. Alone in that mighty silence, a small human form with her hands clasped together repeats the prayer of the world, repeats the cry of the earth, repeats.... They did not want her alive – she is conquering death.
The veil of illusion shrouding an unknown reality.
She is wearing down death from within.
When our illusions are wholly gone, “that” will come. “I am walking a very thin line....” The world is walking a very thin line. Will it fall on this side or that side?
It is perhaps time to decide what we want.
My gaze is so intense, my heart so grieved that, at times, I seem to penetrate that tomb. And I seem to discern something very still staring at death straight in the face, and an indomitable will – waiting.
Waiting for our prayer to join hers.
Mother, what do you have to say to these human offspring?
On that November 18, 1973, she said something. I was stunned, aching from head to toe amid those hundreds and thousands of people staring at a “dead body.” The fans were droning, the neon lights were glaring; there was a scent of incense and jasmine in the air; they were making her coffin with all dispatch. But my heart was filled with such an enormous “This-is-not-possible,” as if the entire earth and all the sorrowful men of this earth were crying out in my heart. So then, this was the “end,” as it always was – as at Thebes and Babylon and Buchenwald. It was the end. And we start all over again. It was so overwhelmingly not-possible. Never, ever will I go through it again. Never, ever will there be “another time” with its sorrow and prayers and fruitless pain of being. There were a thousand men in my heart, all alike, who had waited and waited for THAT MOMENT. And there was no moment. We will have to come again in another life and learn again about Euclid and the law of gravity, and sorrow and “happiness” – and end up in a hole again? I was so broken, shattered on that November 18 – there was only a splitting headache and a blank look staring and staring at that procession of dead people. But, suddenly, I had the most stupendous experience of my life. I who had so much complained to Mother of never having any “experience”! I was in no condition to have an experience, or concentrate or pray, or will anything – I was nothing but a headache, an aching body, a kind of frightful nonentity staring at a small white form. An unintelligible masquerade. It was false, screamingly false. A dream. Not real.
All of life was not-real.
Then she lifted me in her arms. She lifted me above my headache, lifted me above that crowd, above all those meaningless little bodies. And I was in a sound-burst. I entered a stupendous peal of bells – vast as the universe, exceeding all universes, all lives, all bodies, and yet WITHIN – A colossal ringing that swept away the worlds, swept away the pains, swept away the whys and the hows; I was one with that formidable SOUND ringing over the universe:
NO OBSTACLE, NOTHING WILL STOP
NO OBSTACLE, NOTHING WILL STOP
NO OBSTACLE, NOTHING WILL STOP...
... ringing and ringing. The whole world was ringing in a torrent of rapturous, irresistible, triumphant joy. NOTHING WILL STOP.... It was the inevitable new world.
My whole body was trembling.
June 21, 1981
Completed (in French) July 12, 1981 with love