A Note – from the Aeon Centre of Cosmology
In this issue we begin a regular feature, ‘Letters from Skambha’. It consists of letters from Patrizia Norelli-Bachelet to students of the New Way in various parts of the world. The purpose is to offer readers of VISHAAL an opportunity for a direct and immediate participation in certain facets of the work at the Centre.
A good portion of Sri Aurobindo’s letters to his disciples centred on his efforts to explain the newness of his Yoga and the precise lines his work would take in the world, distinguishing it from all other spiritual endeavours.
If this effort was necessary in Sri Aurobindo’s time, it is an even more imperative need now, since the culminating stages of this work have been reached. As explained in the second letter reproduced here, ‘This Question of Purpose’, the new stage has propelled us into the dimensions of the Supramental Yoga. Therefore Thea discusses in this letter the distinctions to be made between the Integral Yoga and the Supramental in its initial phase. In the process she explains the characteristics of the ‘fields’ where the two yogas are practiced and what constitutes such a field. The present conditions prevailing in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry and in Auroville are outlined in this context.
The first letter, ‘Will and Seeing in the New Way’, casts further light on certain distinguishing features of this work. It is a sequel to the letter reproduced in VISHAAL, 2/3, August 1987 under the title ‘The First Imperative’.
‘WILL AND SEEING IN THE NEW WAY’
23 August 1987
This time from Skambha, the navel of the world! I am beginning to glean the power this place has. It does provide a certain inner support. It helps to arrest a certain ‘caving in’. But this only became possible after realising the inner ‘skambha’, after forging that new axis which is the true centre that fills the ‘void’. Then only did the outer, physical Skambha come into being. But since its destiny existed obviously from the beginning, to serve as this Support, for many hundreds of years it was left untouched. Nothing could ever get going here, no matter who owned the property. In this way you see how the two developments go hand in hand. So, was it Skambha’s power and destiny exerting itself to make me realise that new Axis in order to permit Skambha to finally express itself? Or was it the other way around? I find that this summarises a key feature of this work, – the manner in which a harmonisation comes into being regarding the inner and outer, and the relatedness of things, people, events. How all of this takes place in a field of Oneness – therefore this sort of harmony and integration can come about.
So, the question cannot be answered – which came first, the chicken or the egg. It has to be formulated differently. It is a question of the centre coming into being first, because this is the reality of Creation. But each ‘thing’ in Creation has its centre. Thus there is my centre and Skambha’s. It is the centres of these two elements that have experienced a harmonisation capable of bringing about an integration of various dimensions, all of which are dependent on their respective centres.
We tend to overlook the fact that all of creation is an extension of the Centre – but which is everywhere. We tend to believe that only human beings possess the capacity for this type of centrality to operate. But the fact that we do overlook these essentials is precisely why we cannot experience this harmony and integrality. We are constantly cutting out aspects of Reality. It is only the Truth-Consciousness that can resolve this conundrum; the Supermind alone has the power, the capacity to reconcile the apparent paradoxes. For they are paradoxes, until the Power manifests that can reconcile them. Thereafter the paradox is replaced by understanding and by a continuous growth based on Truth-Seeing.
This brings me to the point of your first letter which I want to answer, concerning work for the Divine or for humanity. Again, another conundrum? But what do we really mean when we say, This Yoga is for the Divine? And if so, would this really present a conflict for you with regard to your ‘work for humanity’?
You see, the yoga for the Divine can never conflict with what your true Dharma is. Indeed, if you do the yoga ‘for the Divine’ the object is to realise that inner truth, that ‘seed’ of the Divine within. In this way we begin to do the yoga for the Divine. Really speaking, the Divine then does the yoga of the world through us, because that Stable Point has been unveiled which permits us to be the Divine’s instrument for this work. Until that happens our yoga is for the purpose of achieving that state.
This takes us back to the question of centres and centering. If one’s goal in life is to work for humanity, to alleviate its pain in whatever sphere – be this through physical care, political work or whatever – then we are poising our consciousness beyond this centre. And in actual fact this may hinder us from finding our true inner Truth. We are simply caught in the periphery. We may be doing the ‘right’ thing, or we may not. Nothing is really clear. However, if we centre ourselves first, then everything shifts. We may continue to do the same work, but this other poise makes all the difference in the work. It makes whatever we do not only more meaningful but more powerful, more lastingly significant. Our contribution endures because it is then supported by all the other ‘centres’ in existence. There comes into being a conscious cementing of a network that goes from truth-centre to truth-centre. Then a ‘new world’ is born.
So, you send me X’s material to assess what bio-kinetics is all about. But, you see, this is not the point. There are so many techniques that sound so good, that ‘produce results’ as you write of bio-kinetics or Polarity. But so what? Don’t you see that I am talking about something else? I am saying, Realise that Seed, that inner Truth. Then whatever the technique it will be used rightly and as a part of a truly integrated reality. In this lies the big difference, and this is why in spite of all these new (and old) techniques no one can really introduce the ‘stable change’, the enduring power to bring about the new world. This is what defines ‘hopping about’.
How are you to know? You follow your inner promptings which oblige you to enroll yourself in X’s course. But perhaps you should have concentrated your energies at that point, rather than seek this new escape. Perhaps you should have held firm under the pressure to come to terms with that inner truth. For indeed, when that pressure is applied the ‘hopping about’ is intensified! The reason is rather obvious.
So, how does the Yoga deal with this? How are you to know what a true prompting is?
You have to practice the Yoga seriously and consistently to come to the point where you can distinguish between the mental and vital promptings – which are the waves in your periphery of consciousness, your outer being – and the soul’s command. For a long time one’s yoga centres on this achievement. It is no small accomplishment, for when the reversal comes about that cements this condition for good, the face of things changes dramatically. Then one is an instrument of the Divine in the world, through which the Divine Mother does the Yoga of the Earth.
There is a stage in this process which is very revealing of the goal itself. I am witnessing it especially clearly in one of the group there now, in these days. It concerns the question of Purpose. At a certain point before a decisive shift is made, one becomes acutely aware of a lack of purpose in one’s life. There has been sufficient contact with this work for the seed of that Purpose to have been planted. But a moment of suspension comes at a certain point and the seed lies dormant in a sense. It is then that a person begins to become aware of the void, the emptiness inside. This awareness is fostered by a certain undermining. The Seed is acting covertly. Its existence, centrally placed though hidden as yet, is able to serve as an underminer to all the peripheral activities the person has been indulging in with satisfaction. This is when the Purpose is acting negatively. That is, there is a phase in the beginning (which may last a long time, depending upon the individual) when the only action possible is a negative one – to undermine the periphery. This is because the consciousness has been poised there all along. It is accustomed to that activity of covering up the void by the waves it casts. Then the seed is planted in the centre of one’s consciousness and that poise is threatened. The aspirant is usually frightened at this stage and feels he/she is neither here nor there. But it is a necessary stage. One has to become aware of the void in one’s life and being and how this was sought to be filled peripherally. Each time this failed a new escape was found, a new ‘filler’. So, I repeat, this is the Power of the One acting negatively, as an underminer. Its existence, its presence by itself serves to draw power away from the peripheral parts of the being – namely the mental and the vital.
What then is needed to come out of this limbo, this suspension, and into the next phase? It is an act of will. This is precisely the nature of the One, the Power inherent in the Divine Purpose, – that ‘seed’. It is the seed/seat of the Divine Will. So, the aspirant has to exert the will centrally at this stage in order to move on and not become rooted in this negative process of undermining; for if that were the case, one could not experience the creative consciousness at work in the world nor be its instrument. Our life is then purposeless, as the condition of our civilisation displays. Collectively the world is at this stage – in transition toward ‘something else’ but presently only aware of the collapse and the purposelessness of its existence. The New Way has to secure the implanting of that ‘seed’, that Divine Purpose, centrally in the consciousness of humanity. That is the greater goal of this work. In this way only can this perilous stage society is in be overcome successfully.
How then does the individual contribute to this process and help to establish this Divine Purpose in humanity, thereby bringing into existence the new consciousness and species? It is by carrying out this process in oneself, this same process.
So when the aspirant is made fully conscious of the void, at a certain point an act of will is required to ‘quicken the seed’. This is engendered by a ‘conspiracy of circumstances’. These create a pressure, resulting in a certain combustion, let us say, which compels the will to exert itself. It is for this reason that this yoga is so effective and brings about real and lasting change. It has this power over circumstances because it acts centrally and is rooted in creation. Then the circumstances of one’s life become allies and tools of the Shakti and this ‘conspiracy’ forces the issue. Then the will exerts itself and from that point onward a positive operation begins.
The choruses I hear when people are in this suspension phase are all the same. They start in the same way; there is a crescendo and then a climax. First it is a certain rebellion and a backing off. Then there is the distance within which one begins to become aware of the void: the undermining of the periphery has started. The lines are then: “Nothing has meaning anymore for me!’ Then one clings even more ardently to the old elements and ways to fill the void. One grabs hold of a lover, a husband, a profession, – whatever we have been accustomed to using. Panic sets in. But the seed is planted, and so, more conclusively than ever one is made aware of the fact that the old pattern is fast crumbling and, more importantly, that it is futile to seek to prolong the collapse. The sooner one realises this the better. One lets go, and then a certain calm sets in which is propitious for the next stage.
It is at this point that the aspirant begins to realise what has shifted and what is the cause of the distress. The Sun in one’s inner universe is seeking to be born. And one realises that nothing else has any meaning – centrally – except that. At this point an act of will takes place that brings a preliminary, decisive reorganisation of one’s being, and by consequence of the circumstances of one’s life. This central Purpose, the One in the Core, can begin to influence all the aspects of our life. Then ‘all life is yoga’, as Sri Aurobindo has written, because our life is infused in all its aspects with this central Fire. After this it is hard for the aspirant to become satisfied with the old way.
There is a certain combined action that brings this about. It is a new combination and power and therefore it might look as if this work does not produce results. This is a very superficial view. It is based on the fact that we associate results with techniques; so the more techniques we learn and practice, the more results we will get. It is very easy then to criticise this work by the claim that there is no technique, no method, and so forth.
However, there is a new Power working here which makes our life the field and our seeing the method. That is, it can be defined as an ‘act of seeing’ – and this is the definition of Creation itself, as the Mother once explained so beautifully: it is a ‘vision that unfolds’. What we ‘see’ is the result of the Supreme’s unfolding vision and power of seeing, – that ‘Eye extended in heaven’ of the Veda.
When the new Seeing is awakened, when the Eye is unveiled, then it acts as a power in all aspects of your life. It is the most effective, conclusive and all-embracing system to come into being because it is not a technique that while you practice it you get results – as, for example, when you sit in meditation or recite a mantra. No, this may utilise such techniques, and it may not. Here it is something else. It is the unveiling and unleashing of a new Power that utilises every aspect of your life for its purpose, for the fulfilment of Itself. Hence, ‘our yoga is for the Divine’.
Thus once you embark upon this New Way there is no escape, like in The Magical Carousel (Chapter 10), or the ‘confinement’ of the Mother’s Chamber. This system decisively harmonises the centre and the periphery. Hence all life is a reminder and its unfolding is the technique – provided the power of the new Seeing is released. This is accomplished by the aids of this Yoga, – the Gnostic Circle, the Temple and the City-Consciousness, and so forth. All of which serve to allow you to see that Power working in every aspect of your life, to appreciate that your whole life is the method and the field of the Yoga. It is only in this way that you bring about a decisive shift: the Divine, the Summit of your quest, as also the purpose of your life and the purpose of creation itself, are NOT ‘up there’, ‘beyond’, away and out of material creation. It is all right here, on Earth, in matter, and in your very body which provides you with that instrument which is capable of serving you in this Act of Seeing.
‘THIS QUESTION OF PURPOSE’
…Your letter contains important questions at the end, and the timing of its arrival encourages me to give a detailed answer. The fact is I have just returned from the Ashram in Pondicherry where I had some work…. But my experiences there after an absence of seven years convince me that the time has come to press forward energetically if at all Sri Aurobindo’s work is to be fulfilled.
All of this has bearing on the brief exchange of letters I have had with X and Z, and now with you and the questions you ask. But let me first explain why it is that I see no point in continuing a correspondence with Z. The letters I have received from her and her husband are so very full of opinions, ‘advice’, and judgements. This is well and good, but the fact is they have not really read my things, and yet they are full of doubts and questions and judgements. How can one doubt, question, judge what one has no understanding of, even intellectually?
You describe your experiences with the people to whom you have passed on my books and their attitudes. But I must categorically state that my work stands on its own feet. It does not need the authoritative sanction of anyone. Matters have been arranged like this for this phase of the Supramental Manifestation. I do not need anyone to proclaim who I am and what my place in the Work is. It is my task in this Line to do so, because in the process I am able to reveal the new body of Knowledge connected to the third level in the Descent. It is that Knowledge that is the sanctioning authority. And anyone who sincerely reads my books, in particular The New Way, must deal strictly with the knowledge they contain.
The reason why this unusual situation prevails is quite simple to explain. First of all, the supramental apotheosis is a victory of Gnosis. We build the new world on the foundations of the new Knowledge. This bears a fourfold structure, embodied in the four members of the Solar Line. In a descending order these correspond to the Transcendent (9), the Cosmic (6), and the Individual (3), triadic principles upon which the manifestation is based, and which Sri Aurobindo refers to so often in his works. But there is a fourth principle, the power of the Integral. This latter is what consolidates the supramental character of the Manifestation. Hence Sri Aurobindo saw the square as the symbol of the Supermind, given its fourfold essence.
However, at the third level of the Descent, my level and the present times, something significant happens. It is the level of the Individual Divine – and it is the level of choice. At this stage participants in the Work are presented with a choice, because the ‘act of choosing’ is an essential ingredient for the establishment of the higher destiny and the new future. It releases energies, effects the crossing of the threshold between the old and the new and propels one into the new Time.
If things had been arranged differently and I had been provided with an external seal and authoritative sanction, this factor of choosing would not have been present in the Work at all. People involved with Sri Aurobindo and the Mother would have been under an external compulsion, a force imposing its dictates from outside and obliging an acceptance simply on this basis, withholding thereby any more direct involvement in the process. There would have been little or no internal movement and by consequence no act of choosing with its very special characteristics. In a word, the old pattern prevailing in all ashrams would have been repeated here.
But we are not dealing with ‘ashrams’ in Sri Aurobindo’s work. Rather, it is the Supramental Manifestation. Hence something else has been devised, an entirely new process and strategy. The Truth must impose itself from within, by the power it contains of the Word: it is its own Authority. This must generate an inner movement in people who come into contact with this Word. There is no outer compulsion at all. Sri Aurobindo will never come back to Earth to tell disciples: She is the one, follow her! In fact, such a proclamation would be grotesque, to say the least. It would mean that there is no power in my work, no real Gnosis, no self-evident Truth.
Therefore it has been so arranged that I must stand on my own, as my own ‘authority’, that the knowledge which has come as a result of the Yoga would bear ample testimony to who I am and what my place in the Line is. But the interesting part is that none of the people who disbelieve and who criticise my work have actually read my books. If you investigate, my most adverse critics will have to admit that they have never seriously read my writings. This fact alone ought to indicate the prevailing state of affairs and the hard crust of bad will that the Solar Line has been confronted with from its beginning.
And this bad will is not only found beyond the boundaries of Sri Aurobindo’s entourage of disciples and devotees. It exists preeminently within that very entourage, in an even more ferocious state than one finds outside these confines. But this too is a part of the affirmation and establishment of the Supramental Creation.
We are in the process of creating a new Cosmos. Therefore, on the basis of existing energies and their interchange, this new Cosmos must come into being. And this brings me to the important questions you ask in your letter. They can be summed up in the following: What is the distinction between the Integral Yoga and the Supramental? Included in this is the question you also ask, Have I ‘added a new element’ to make the crossing to the supramental Yoga possible?
In a very profound sense I have added a new element – for this has been my precise role. Each member of the Solar Line has contributed an essential ingredient to this fourfold manifestation. But I repeat, at the third level something fundamental happens. The trinity of Transcendent, Cosmic and Individual is completed when the third member takes up the Work. And from the third the fourth Power is born – who is the One. Thus a complete reversal takes place at that level. It is this Reversal that draws the Yoga out of the boundaries of the Integral and into the Supramental.
But let me explain more specifically. This Reversal does not eliminate the need for the transformative process of the Integral Yoga. Rather it must be stated: practice of the Integral Yoga prepares one for the Supramental, allows one to participate in this further stage of transformation. Indeed, the two go hand in hand.
Mind you, they all involve process – the means to effect the transformation in this transitional stage. There will come a time when a process of this nature is superfluous – that is, when the complete reign of the Supramental Truth has come. But for now process is essential. And we must engage in it in full awareness of its nature because this conscious involvement is precisely what distinguished this way from all the others the Earth has known so far.
The Integral Yoga can be said to deal with the individual process almost exclusively. A person’s practice of the Yoga may well involve others but only insofar as they help the individual to progress by creating a ‘field of yoga’. Usually this is accomplished by generating a certain tension. The practitioner requires a field in which to carry out the process because this is indeed an integral work on oneself and all the various parts of the being require a stimulus or an exposure in order to deal with the forces within one’s being that are the object of the integration and transformation. Thus it is always a field restricted to the individual practitioner.
Take the Ashram in Pondicherry. That was the field for the development and practice of the Integral Yoga. In the days when the Yoga Shakti was active in the Ashram conditions were exceptionally propitious for a person to work on him or herself. But the emphasis was always on the individual and his/her relation to the Divine, to the Centre of the Yoga, embodied in Sri Aurobindo and the Mother. I have often explained the situation that prevailed there geometrically. There is a circle whose periphery consists of many dots or points. These would be the individual sadhaks. The centre of the circle is the Mother. Each of these peripheral points is connected to the Centre directly and exclusively. Within the parameters of the Integral Yoga there can be no other possibility: only the Point to the Centre. In terms of number-powers this relationship is understood by the number 8 and its connection with the Overmind. Hence the Ashram’s official birthday is 24.11.1926, which by the Mathematics of Unity can be reduced to 8 (2+4+1+1+1+9+2+6=26=8).
The emphasis is on preparation of the individual to allow for participation in the next phase, that of the supramental Yoga whose number-power is 9. The 8 always indicates an incomplete process – not erroneous but deceivingly incomplete. It indicates that a further step must be taken. For example, in terms of the Hindu Avataric Line the 8 is Sri Krishna, the 8th Avatar. Indeed, what was celebrated on that 24th November was the descent of the Krishna Consciousness into the physical in Sri Aurobindo. In other words, with this foundation he was to begin his work of introducing the next stage. The Ashram was the field for that initial work. Added to this is the fact that he himself has stated that he did not have time to present the details of this next phase. He actually never described the processes of the Supramental Yoga. The ‘Synthesis’, for example, deals primarily with the Integral Yoga, though it ends with the chapter he entitled, ‘Towards the Supramental Time Vision’. And this indeed leaves us with the Key. But in Sri Aurobindo’s time it was merely that, – a key. With it we have been able to open the door and cross the threshold to the realm of the Supramental Yoga.
When the time came for that crossing logically the Ashram was not able to provide the proper field for that extension. The Supramental Yoga requires a more complete field because its process and purpose are more complex. In the language of the New Way, a ‘cosmos’ must be created. The Mother, the second member of the Solar Line, embodying precisely the Cosmic Divine, introduced the new field. She extended the boundaries and set everything in motion for the ‘new time’ and its corresponding process to manifest. Thus she created ‘the city’. Objective analysis of this development alone – from the more confined and restricted arena of an ashram to the wider boundaries of a city – should have allowed disciples to understand what was required of them if they wished to participate in the full process.
The field is complete when the City comes into being, bearing in mind that these arenas represent dimensions and states of consciousness. The 8 as the apex gives way to the 9. Thus Auroville was inaugurated on 28.2.1968, which indeed can be reduced to the number 9 (2+8+2+1+9+6+8=36=9). It was all perfectly as it should be. The Knowledge is that key; with it we can ‘know along with the Supreme’, we can progress and participate in the Supramental Manifestation in full awareness of its marvellous workings, and by this discover that precious quality of the Supermind: a growth from truth to greater truth.
Geometrically there is also a significant shift when the movement progresses to the 9: the points (disciples) on the periphery are not only related to the centre of the circle, but even more significantly, they are related and harmonised among themselves. Thus they are in harmony with the Centre as well as integrated and harmonised with all the points of the periphery among themselves, which in turn provides a collective harmony with the Centre. Consequently, another precious quality of the Supermind is able to express itself: the harmony of the One and the Many, the perfect blending of the unity and the multiplicity. In letters to his disciples Sri Aurobindo has stated that for this greater harmony to come about the Supermind is required, the Overmind is insufficient.
For Sri Aurobindo’s work to affirm itself, for the ‘life divine’ to become established on Earth, these two levels, 8 and 9, must come into being and they must constitute a joint process. If this is not the case as with the Ashram (8) and Auroville (9), then it is simply a repetition of ‘the old fiasco’. The 8 (the Ashram) presumes that it is the highest manifestation in the gradation – and functions on the basis of this erroneous conception. Thus it is crystallising Sri Aurobindo’s work at this incomplete level. In a word, it is crystallising it in the slot of the Overmind. And there can be no greater insult to the Supramental Avatar than this.
The word to use is not crystallisation but fossilisation. Sri Aurobindo’s work is being fossilised in the Ashram. My recent visit there confirmed this to an alarming degree. For, what did I find there?
The cleverest strategy of the Falsehood has been implemented in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry, – so clever that it seems rescue is now impossible. One of the main reasons is that none there realise the need for rescue! They do not know what it is that must be rescued, what they must be rescued from. They do not care, they are uninterested, they are content with their lot and see in it all sorts of evidences of ‘the Mother’s grace’ working. But which ‘mother’? That is the point. That is the question to ask. The Veda speaks of Aditi and Diti, and believe me, it is very hard to see the distinction. This is why I write that the strategy has been so clever.
Thus one encounters ceaseless, constant activity in the Ashram, busy-ness, continuous entertainment, programmes galore, an endless stream of vital stimulation. And above all, no time to STOP and REFLECT on it all. The evidence of the Mother’s grace for ashramites is the constant stream of pilgrims and tourists, the devotees who flock there, with no regard for the quality of the visitors who are being attracted to the place. The money now flows in (contrary to the Mother’s time when the financial situation there was always precarious and difficult). This too HAS to be the Mother’s grace working. (If that is the case, then her Grace is even more spectacularly manifesting in the Pune and Ganeshpuri Ashrams!) There are new businesses coming up constantly, new buildings and all the rest. Fine. But let us analyse the situation more deeply.
My impression of the five days I spent there was that I was being compelled to enter a movement, a constant ‘gyration’. Indeed, like the figure 8. I felt, I saw the entire Ashram caught up in this movement, this busy-ness. But the tragic part is that it was entirely without purpose.
Let me explain. The moment the split between the Ashram and Auroville took place, in 1976 to be precise, both units lost their truth and reason for being. This split was the work of the Lord of Falsehood to render the work of the Supramental Avatar an impossibility. The Ashram has no reason for existing while it is cut-off from the greater extension of itself, of its field. It came into existence to provide the field for the integral yoga leading to the supramental. Thus in 1968 its time to expand came, to extend its boundaries. By number-power 1968 is 6 (1+9+6+8=24=6). In the Gnostic Circle you will see that this 6 is Saturn’s point, which precisely opens the way to the higher dimension of unity, into Sagittarius and the realm where the ‘boundaries are extended’. It is all so wonderfully coherent and exact, just as one would expect the Supramental Manifestation to be.
Yes, all was as it should be. The Mother was there; she was doing the Yoga, carrying out the process. Soon thereafter she gave the most important ingredient of all in this extension: she revealed the ‘centre of the circle’, and this was represented by the City’s heart and soul, the Temple.
Of course we know what happened to all of this. In 1976 the Measure of the Temple was irrevocably lost; and at the very same time the final split between the Ashram and Auroville took place. The Lord of Falsehood had won, it seemed.
However, bear in mind that it was also in 1976 that the fourth element of the Solar Line was unveiled and became a solid ingredient in the process. On that basis the Work was able to continue (elsewhere) and the invincible Destiny was confirmed – for that 4th Power is the principle of Victory.
Thus the Ashram and Auroville now stand as symbols of a truncated process, precisely what the Earth has known until now, precisely why the Supermind could never operate openly and become established as the reigning power, precisely why Mind has held firmly the throne.
Yes, the New Way is the ‘new element’ and it is ‘a method to see the way of our development’, as you question in your letter. But the Supramental Yoga can never be practiced outside of this larger context. It is the ‘city’ that provides the field for the Supramental Manifestation in its complete sense. Hence it can never be an exclusively individual process. You can never participate in the supramental Yoga as an isolated element. The two key words of the 3rd and 4th levels (our present ones) are harmony and integration, respectively. For these to be active the proper field is required. Neither the Ashram or Auroville is this field, divided as they are, centreless as they are, above all else.
I confirmed this in my recent visit. In the Ashram there is ceaseless activity with no central aim or purpose. In Auroville the collapse is evident for the same reason: no central purpose, no guidance, no knowledge, no spiritual leadership.
The Supramental Manifestation cannot establish itself without the Incarnate Vision – the incarnate Vision, which provides that fundamental ingredient: the Divine Will and Purpose. This Incarnate Vision is, for the present, the 3rd Power of the Solar Line; the incarnate Will is the 4th Power. While people connected to Sri Aurobindo’s work refuse to see this, to accept what has been so meticulously and, I would add, superbly arranged, they can only continue in their meaningless, pointless activity – and their endless, mesmerising gyrations around a void.
For there is a void in both the Ashram and Auroville, a ‘centre that cannot hold’. To a person of Knowledge this is an evident fact. To the sentimental devotee and complacent, slothful disciple, it is a truth which he or she refuses to see, to believe, for it takes courage to see, to break Diti’s spell. Because the strategy of the Falsehood has been so wickedly effective.
Skambha has come into being because there is here that ‘centre that holds’, Skambha houses that centre, thus it is the navel of this Work. For those who have had enough of the illusory gyrations around a void, the work is not truncated but finds its happy fulfilment here. And fortunately I do not require any human ‘authority’ to give me a sanction which only the Supreme can give, which only the realisation of the Yoga can confirm. Nor does this fulfilment require the belief or acceptance of anyone. The Solar Line with its four members is a fact. It is. It can never not be.
19 October 1987