Letters from Skambha

Of course, when I read your letter I cannot really understand what the problem is. I mean, it seems to me you are making a problem where there ought not to be one. But this is usually the way it seems to someone who is outside – relatively speaking – the situation. You have to ‘live with yourself’ and be comfortable with yourself. And I suppose it is this point that creates all our disturbances: we all seem to be seeking ways to be ‘comfortable’ with ourselves and our lives. We have ‘made our beds’ and we want them, we DEMAND that they be comfortable to sleep in! This is our birthright, it would seem.

    So, coming to terms with our lives, as they are, is the problem. There is an underlying frustration in what you write. And I just wonder if it isn’t that you have not found the right companion for yourself. I believe that some of the difficulty lies in this. If the ‘right person’ were there, you wouldn’t be tormented so much about whether or not you should have a relationship, whether or not this would interfere with the yoga, whether or not this would be a distraction, whether it is right, wrong, or whatever. The fact that these considerations exist is what indicates that whoever the person, it is not the right one.

  I do not see how you can suppress your desire for a relationship when it is there. I have never asked you to do this. Just the contrary. What I have repeatedly asked is that you BE CONSCIOUS of what you are doing, whatever you do. So, if the need is there for a relationship, then approach this as consciously as possible. This question of ‘being conscious’ is not to be confused with the type of awareness that is sought in psychotherapy, or similar quests. It is not to indulge without ‘guilt’, ‘shame’, or ‘remorse’, and all the rest. That is not the point. The problems of guilt and shame and remorse are, in the context of this work, simply first-rung issues. They do not go deep enough.

The awareness you must seek here is a very careful and detached observation of yourself so that you can come to understand what DRIVES YOU, what impels or compels you into these situations. We are not concerned with remorse or guilt or shame, or the fact that it just ‘isn’t done’ when one is practicing yoga. Those considerations are all irrelevant or of secondary importance. But you must observe yourself and try to fathom what drives you into these situations. It seems to me that the relationships you find yourself in are inappropriate. They correspond to a certain ‘deformity’ in your nature, if I may call it that. So, you want to SEE THAT. You want to face it clearly and squarely. Unless you do, whatever relationship you find yourself in will never be satisfying. You may use the excuse of the Yoga now to hide the real cause of this frustration; but in your heart you know that this is not the point. The proof is that I have never said: Do not have a relationship. And yet you (and all of you there) keep harping on this issue. At the same time, you do not take seriously when I write that you must simply strive to be as conscious as possible in whatever circumstances life brings before you. The idea is so that these circumstances will be clear mirrors for you to perceive rightly and act accordingly. What must change in your way of being, in your assessment of things, is the focus of your attempts at awareness. I repeat, they are not to rid you of guilt. They are to try to ferret out what in your nature compels you to act in certain ways – anger is another example, and giving in to those impulses – and what therefore ATTRACTS certain situations to you.

My feeling is that you are caught in a circuit. The circumstances of your life are playing out an endless refrain; and you cannot get out of it because you are seeking the wrong thing. You are convinced you should be seeking something that is irrelevant to the real problem and therefore has no power to change anything in your life. But, take heart. Most people are in the same trap!

The fact that you cannot resolve your living and working situation is another example of this trap, if we can call it that. You are caught in a pattern that needs to be broken. You know it. But whatever you do seems to thrust you even more solidly into that same old web. This is due to the fact that you have not gone deep enough. The issues you are dealing with are simply distractions. They are not the real forces that are shaping your life. They are all superficial in the final analysis.

The visual impression of this type of situation can be had in The Magical Carousel, in the chapter on Cancer in relation to Capricorn (4th and 10th). And interestingly, these signs are the USA and India, respectively. That is why in America you have more or less superficial methods to deal with problems. Whereas in India, though the problems seem colossal and far more impossible to solve, the attempt is always to go deep, to the core of things. So, there is the Queen of Night in her beguiling disguises, offering one distraction after another. The children find themselves in a labyrinth, with no direction to the ‘search’. They don’t even know what they are searching for! And when they stumble upon ‘something’, it is veils and illusions and an enticing masquerade that gets them nowhere. Nowhere PERMANENT, that is.

On the other hand, in the Capricorn chapter, the entire ‘thrust’ of the chapter and the experience is this underlying direction, ever and always. They again find themselves in a sort of labyrinth, but with an immense difference. Something urges them forward on the basis of a clear direction, a rise higher and higher, not round and round and round… And on this basis they get to the root of things and they find their true destinies and their true dharmas.

The Woman who represents the finality of the quest in Capricorn is very different from the Cancer Queen of Night. The latter is constantly on the move! She is constantly changing, she has no permanent identity, and therefore does not encourage that quest in those of her ‘castle’. Even the Crab they fall asleep on in the beginning of the chapter offers the same image: they are convinced they have fallen asleep on a SOLID ROCK. But then it starts moving! This is to represent the ego. One thinks it is solid, unchanging, our ‘true self’. Yet it is thoroughly UNSTABLE, just like the rock that turns into a moving crab. And a prime characteristic of the crab is its way of moving about in unexpected directions – sideways, oblong strides this way and that.

Omanisol of Capricorn, on the other hand, is STABLE, PERMANENT, IMMOBILE. She represents that eternal element we carry within at the core of our beings. This is what you have to reach, through all the veils and shadows of the surface layers of your personality. When you reach that you can begin to ‘shape your destiny’. Which simply means that you will draw to yourself only those situations which are in harmony with THAT, which conspire to further THAT, which serve to enhance and make manifest THAT, and only THAT.

Now, this is for most people a frightening panorama. They feel that a pursuit of this nature will render them isolated and cut off from the little and meaningful things of life. It represents an ivory tower of aloneness for most. But this is a wrong assessment. As I have written, suppose you are meant to have a relationship with someone and to share your life with another person. How can you truly know this unless you reach that Core where your true destiny is written? At the same time, when you do, you will set in motion that play of circumstances which will draw to you the right person for expression of the highest part of yourself. It may be that you are meant to have this sort of expression in this lifetime. The point is to make the best of it, to make whatever relationship you are destined to have the outcome of a clear being, with no veils and shadows and twists. In such a state, what can one expect? Only more knots and more knots, and more and more…

We cannot reach this state by wallowing in guilt. Western psychology has rightfully understood what a negative emotion guilt is. But you do not liberate yourself from the drain this negativity produces simply by convincing yourself that to indulge is your ‘right’ and therefore you need not feel bad about it! In fact, people only have these reactions when they are in situations that are not in harmony with their true inner being. The ‘discomfort’ one feels is really the soul’s uneasiness in the situation. It is tolerated as a means to learn and to reach that clear condition of being. One has to move on!  But one has to strive to liberate oneself forever from those negative ties that compel us into situations about which we will feel this unease.

If you observe yourself very carefully henceforth you will see the root of the problem. This means that you cannot judge yourself (again, a point understood by many modern thinkers), you cannot condemn yourself, you cannot wallow in self-pity and a sense of guilt or remorse. You have to be alert for this task. And that means you have to be highly CONCENTRATED. You have to muster all your energy about you and create an atmosphere around you which will be conducive to SEEING. You must call on the Divine Presence. It must become a habit with you to be able to call this Presence forth in such situations.


The Void where Thought was born’…

(The following is a sequel to the letter that appeared in
VISHAAL 4/1, April, 1989, ‘The Infinite and the Detail’)

…I hasten to answer your letter because there seems to be a wrong impression formed. When I wrote about a wrong ‘direction’, I did not mean that you should stop your actual practice of the yoga. This was not the question at all. In fact, as far as I can see, in spite of everything, the practice is bearing results, especially along the lines I have been indicating. It seemed to me that concentration in the heart would be more beneficial. And this is what is happening now, perhaps more than in the past.

 The practices you describe are the general lines of the yoga. They are forever valid and should not be dispensed with. However, for each one the practice varies, as you know. In your case, the path you are following seems to suit you; and that is fine. But what I was referring to was the direction. This is something slightly different, though of course it does have bearing on the sadhana one follows.

By ‘direction’ I am referring to something Sri Aurobindo had written about, perhaps not using this term however, when he wrote of the overall aim of the yoga, its goal, which was different from all other paths. That is the direction. In other words, what is the final objective of your sadhana. As expressed by you I saw no difference in what you were pursuing than in most other paths. That is, the yoga was a means to go up and up and away. The sadhana in the embodied centres, the mental and the vital, was ultimately to provide a springboard for the ascending consciousness to reach the overmental and supramental planes. But then, after that? I mean, I see no difference from Tantra. And this has been my point all along.

The way the yoga is practiced by sadhaks does not convince me that what is gained can become a part of the evolution. That is, that it can CHANGE THINGS HERE, much less signify for the sadhak any bringing down of the light of those upper regions and establishing that as this base IN LIFE. Consequently, I have dealt with this issue at length, in my own yoga and recorded the results in the third volume of The New Way. This is because I find it essential. Also because, as I described in my last letter, it is the work of the Third in the Line to make this connection here below. Nothing of that work had been effectively done. Even now we are merely in the beginning, one could say. But with a difference. Now at least the lines are very clear. One sees clearly what has to be done and that the first solid foundation has been laid. This is a big step forward. But there are many more steps yet to be taken.

My whole point in the third volume of The New Way was to reveal the position in the body of the convergence of the descent and the ascent. I refer specifically to Tantra, as well as other paths. In Tantra, though the embodied centres are used for the sadhana and the Shakti is the focus of the worship and practice, what is the finality? The sadhak concentrates on the rise of the Kundalini, from the lowest chakra at the base of the spine, up through the others and then finally to the attainment of the highest. But where is that highest? It is outside the body. It is above the crown of the head. This is a clear ‘symbol’. The final attainment means a liberation from the body. The embodied centres were used simply to reach that liberation. And any Tantric will tell you that his aim is to secure release from birth ultimately, and a dissolution of his consciousness in the Absolute Brahman, unfettered by the coils of earthly flesh. This is no different from any other path. [In fact, the multiplicity of paths is mainly to cater to the different temperaments of seekers, rather than to provide different goals.] And hence the common slogan in spirituality is ‘there is only ONE TRUTH,’ and all paths and all religions ultimately agree and converge on this one truth.

Now, this is clearly where Sri Aurobindo’s work parts ways with ALL other spiritual paths. And this is why in the final analysis it is even difficult to refer to it as a ‘spiritual’ path. Again, this in itself introduces difficulties because one tends to rely on the old patterns and formulas which simply do not prove reliable in this work. But the new pattern or blueprint has been given; and it is this fact that I am constantly stressing. You have finally understood this when you write ‘….you used them (the Ashram, Auroville and Matrimandir) as objective examples of the development of their cosmos.’ This is accurate. Time and again I have sustained that the keys to the REAL development of Sri Aurobindo’s work are given in certain items of objective knowledge, foremost of which is the Mother’s original plan of the Matrimandir. Again in my last letter to you I stressed the fact: the Mother gave us a blueprint of a ‘soul’ with all its connections to time and matter. And in my work I have revealed those connections and the inner and deeper significance of the Chamber. For this reason it is not possible to regard the Auroville experiment as something to be left under the tutorship of individuals who have no idea of what the real meaning is in the elements they have taken possession of. We have to accept that this is so and continue with the work in spite of these ‘knots’; but at the same time we must see these conditions clearly and realise that these are the means devised to undo those ‘knots’. This too you have now come to understand.

I know of no sadhak in the Ashram or any person in Auroville or connected with that project who has seen the direction of the Work and who understands anything of the new way. And therefore I see that these people, some of whom may be quite sincere in their aspiration, as cut off from the reality of things, as if suspended, awaiting ‘something’, but not even having any clear idea of what that Something might be. That is, there is no appreciation of what is required to make Sri Aurobindo’s yoga radically different from all others, as he stated it was. The sadhana I have witnessed in the inmates of the Ashram – and I do not include the people in Auroville because I have yet to come across anyone from that place who is actually doing any sadhana at all! – is essentially no different from all other spiritual quests. People may believe they are ‘doing the yoga’ – the new yoga of Sri Aurobindo – but this does not make for any effective progress along these new lines.

When Sri Aurobindo announced that he was bringing something entirely new into the Earth’s atmosphere and revolutionising the world of the Spirit, he meant what he was stating very seriously. Far more seriously than what most people believe. That is, they do not have any idea of what such a statement implies. And so, when I write to you that the direction is wrong, I mean this: the goal you are positing as the finality of your quest does not strike me as being expressive of this newness. I see that it will lead you to the goal of all other paths: a dissolution in the Self, or the Brahman, and ‘release’ from birth. You may not see this yourself, for you may not even understand what this really means. Hardly anyone does. But it could very well be the finality of your quest. You may not realise this, for you may not even know what is implied in what I write. But nonetheless I must tell you what I see; also because I believe this lies at the basis of the strain you feel. Being destined for this path, it is clear that the Yoga Shakti will be constantly pressuring for a right direction. And when one is sincere, as I believe you are, one’s aspiration will always attract the person or persons or circumstances which will help to correct the direction and guide you along the way that is the truth of your soul in this lifetime.

In the late 1920s, Sri Aurobindo understood that a similar wrong direction was threatening to overtake his work. As you know from the Ashram literature, it was the period referred to as the Ashram’s ‘brilliant period’. This was because many, many sadhaks at the time were having dazzling visions, the Gods were easily seen and everyone believed that ‘heaven’ was indeed descending on Earth. The Mother herself expressed to Sri Aurobindo that she had received the Creative Word, the power to bring this ‘new’ creation on Earth.

But what was actually happening? Sri Aurobindo knew that the plane that had been reached and the powers responsible for these visions and countless experiences were the lesser forces of the Overmental Plane, and that allowing those powers to shape the new creation would not mean a NEW creation at all. It was in fact a very clever way to cement the old and impede for all times the supramental creation from coming into being.

Sri Aurobindo acted quickly. He halted the movement, stating that if it continued a new world religion would come into being, but nothing to do with his work. This assessment was entirely accurate because the finality of any Overmental creation is necessarily on the level of the religious consciousness. It is in fact the source of Religion.

The result of his action must not have pleased most of his disciples. It plunged everyone right ‘into the mire’. It was then said that the sadhana had gone into the physical, and there were no more dazzling visions and pleasant sleeping pills, as I call them. The work was hard, arduous, but RIGHT.

You see then that even with Sri Aurobindo present there has been a continuous danger of a wrong direction. This pertains to the overall lines of the Work, but it is no less relevant for the individual, through whom these new blueprints have been given. Whether or not they are used by disciples is another matter. If one’s aspiration is sincere for the truly NEW CREATION, then somehow one will be guided to the right way and the person who can guide one on this new path.

There is a ‘knot’ that is very, very deep-rooted in the human embodied consciousness. It is common to all who inhabit a body. This Knot is so difficult to undo – for after all, it is the nexus of the mental creation – that no one prior to Sri Aurobindo has made any effective attempt to get rid of this tremendous obstacle. To attain the heights, as has been done by countless seers and yogis in the past, this Knot presented no obstacle. One could overlook it entirely – precisely because the ‘direction’ was otherworldly; in which case, one had no obligation at all to deal with this problem. Ultimately, it became resolved, or rather dissolved by withholding any reality from it. One could UNDERMINE its existence to the point where it became an ‘illusion’, and the creation that it upheld, the mental human creation, was, by consequence, equally illusory. This was a very effective way of dealing with that Knot. It was so very effective that it is precisely this effectiveness that stands in the way today when we try to deal with this problem. In other words, these great sages had attained such wondrous heights that when we try to convince seekers of the necessity to disregard those past achievements and strive for this ‘new way’, they are not easily convinced. What have we to show for all the struggle and arduous tapasya required to undo that Knot? Especially in these early stages when it is demanded that we plough through the mire of ages in the effort to release those ‘rays of the hidden sun’?

When I assess what has been done so far and the QUALITY of the Knowledge that constitutes this New Way, I find nothing in the legacy spirituality has left us from the past to compare. And I include in this assessment all of Tantra and its various offshoots such as Tibetan Buddhism which has so much of the Tantric School in it. But an appreciation of this sort is not open to all. Precisely because none are aware of the EXACT nature of what is being accomplished by this new way. In the first place, they are not aware what lies at the root of the condition to be transformed, what Sri Aurobindo had alluded to in his poem, ‘A God’s Labour’. He stated very clearly that he had gone ‘where none had gone’, and he described what he encountered as ‘a falsehood…planted deep/At the very root of things’. And further on, he states, as he describes his plunge through ‘the dumb Earth’s dreadful heart’. …’I have seen the source whence her agonies part and the inner reason of hell’. And finally, ‘I have pierced the Void where Thought was born, I have walked in the bottomless pit’…

The ‘void’ that he sings of is the ‘knot’ I describe. The knot is not actually that Void but it is the ‘web’ that Mind weaves out of this nothingness and which it holds to as its sustaining power and ultimate apotheosis. Hence all the paths of spirituality that we know today in one way or another cling to this goal as the apex of the quest. It may not be explicitly stated, but when the goal is in some way ‘otherworldly’, as in all cases, then this Void is implicit.

So, you see, this is the direction that has to be changed. It means going against the current of aeons and aeons. It means having a PRECISE KNOWLEDGE of the old web and how it came into being and of the new matrix that is being created right now.

It is very easy for me to spot an ‘infiltration’ of the old. To such an extent that sometimes I find it bewildering because there is hardly anything free from this contamination. And yet we must do the work right here, and right now. Thus we are condemned (and I choose the word carefully!) to work in the midst of and in spite of this contamination. Perhaps with this background you can better understand why animals have had to be used for an essential part of the work, regarding certain basic lines of this new ‘web’. Their consciousness is not contaminated by that Knot, by that ‘falsehood…planted at the very root of things’, by that ‘Void where Thought was born’… This does not mean that animals are not subjected to the falsehood that is decay and death, or the perishability of this ephemeral flesh. What it means is that Mind has not the upper hand in the animal and vegetable kingdoms. Regarding the latter, it is clear that the Mother found flowers to be more ‘receptive’ to her force and hence it was her custom to pass something of her power to disciples through this medium. Each flower she gave was a clear container of her Force; and since she had the capacity to perceive the ‘inner truth’ of each flower, she was able to localise the particular ‘container’ that would best suit the occasion and the type of force to be transmitted which would aid the disciple in his/her particular problem. This again is because the vegetable kingdom is not contaminated – the contamination being the rule of Mind. The problem with our species is the dominance of Mind, its USURPATION of the highest position. This is what has produced that hardened knot ‘at the root of things’.

In this too spirituality has provided an answer: go beyond mind, stop thought, sit in meditation and remove yourself from the problem, find peace in the beyond, in the static Brahman…and so on. The formulas are many, but none of them solved the ‘nether mysteries’.

The aim of my work presently is to create an indelible imprint on the human consciousness regarding this ‘new direction’. To achieve this I have to keep pounding away at the obnoxious habit of the human being to equate spirituality with otherworldliness, whatever the disguise. At the same time I have to offer impeccable means to see this new Power working in the world now, in its present state. In a word, I have to bring about a ‘new seeing’, a ‘seeing in understanding’ – not visions and lights and all the rest. In fact, that avenue has to be closed for now. One cannot add more baggage to the seeker which has to be shed in any case. But people equate spirituality with those experiences, or with ‘experiences’ of some sort. When these are lacking the person cannot believe he/she is doing any sadhana at all. Precisely because that ‘new seeing’ is not present, for if it were, ‘all things would be made new’ and the thirst for that sort of enticement would vanish. Whatever one perceives ON THIS EARTH would be transformed – the transformation being the lived experience of seeing the Divine Consciousness IN ALL THINGS, controlling everything, and carrying evolution to the next stage, the supramental creation.

But for most people this is not spiritual enough. And there are so many temperaments to contend with. Each seeker has his own individual consciousness to be accommodated into this new ‘web’.

I have difficulty with the terms ‘ascent’ and descent’ at this point. I feel that with the introduction of the supramental yoga, which had not occurred before, these terms are too linear, they do not truly express the real condition of the sadhana, either individually or collectively. So the terms that NATURALLY evolved out of this phase of the work are ‘vertical’ and ‘horizontal’. I see it in this way: what would be equivalent to the ‘descent’ is a vertical descending direction similar to the descent of old; but the main shift concerns this question of ‘ascent’. Presently it is more on the order of a horizontal expansion. These terms can also be equated with contraction and expansion. Visually, it can be ‘seen’ in this way: there is a descent, like a seed. This then produces ripples, expanding waves in the consciousness-field of the sadhak, which move ever outward from that point. And the ‘point’ I refer to is the important NEXUS in the body where this shift or reversal takes place. That is the new dimension of the soul experience I have referred to in my last letter.

In this condition the body, with all its subtle sheaths of course, is the FIELD of the sadhana. It is never rejected and there is no attempt to exceed its boundaries. But there is a widening so as to incorporate into its field more force, more light, more of the higher things which until now the physical instrument was not able to contain. Contraction draws these into the expanding field – a simultaneous movement.

Again I must refer to the real facts of the Manifestation to provide examples of this arrangement which is valid for the individual as well as the collectivity. The ‘descent’ or the descending vertical direction corresponds to the Solar Line – 9, 6, and 3. What does this mean for the individual? In what way can this Descent become a part of his/her sadhana? What the Solar Line represents is the reality of each individual on this planet, but IN POTENTIAL. That is, you consist of Transcendent, Cosmic and Individual Divine attributes. You, as an individual incarnate soul, come with these triadic attributes. The purpose of your sojourn on this planet is to REALISE that, to unveil these triune powers and ultimately to contribute this to the evolution on Earth so that we shall soon see a new world order founded on this hitherto hidden potential. The soul is that Point into which these attributes, transcendent and cosmic, are ‘compressed’. In the course of the sadhana, when that ‘reversal’ takes place, then there begins the expanding movement, with that Stable Constant, that ‘point’ as one’s base and no longer the Void. This is what I refer to as ‘the birth that fills the void’. At the Reversal the expanding movement begins which is like the ripples in a pond, extending outward from the centre.

The Gnostic Circle contains all of this: the Sacred Triangle is the Circle’s relation to the vertical descent; and the rest, the division of 12, corresponds to the fourfold horizontal poise of individual and collectivity. That is, the Gnostic Circle is a combination of 9 and 12, or vertical and horizontal directions. The 4.5 Orbit is the ‘nether region’ which was formerly the ‘void’ but which now, with the release of the Light, has become that kingdom of the Fourth Power in the Line, and hence the great Reversal Point. This diagram represents the complete field of consciousness-being. These are the lines of the Yoga now. (5.4.1989)


‘The Relative, the Absolute, the One’

…In your letter you had asked about ‘truth’, perhaps it can be given only in ‘drops’. Well, this is true in a way. But the fact is I have given out the full thing, yet even when people read they themselves only select ‘drops’, or what they can understand at any given moment. So, now I have come to the point, just very recently, of taking a different attitude. I am not going to bother with people who have doubts and who cling to them, because they refuse to let go of their doubts since it would mean a commitment and a progress. They would have to CHANGE, quite simply. It is easier to keep doubting. The doubt helps one to remain the same, stuck in the same mire and never going anywhere. Or else they cling to falsehood, out and out. So, I shall not bother any more.

    I will put the truth to you, plain and simple. But I cannot promise that its simplicity will be of any help to you. However, let me try. It concerns your question about the Ananda Power… Yes, this Power corresponds to the Third… But I find these titles just too limiting. They are, for me, the old formulation which arose out of an incomplete knowledge. At the time Sri Aurobindo formulated his work in this way he was describing a manifestation based on TWO POWERS. This created a certain limitation. But he had no choice. That was all time had evolved and ‘permitted’. More ‘time’ was needed to be able to express the true new way.

   What this meant was a shift from two to three. That is, it revolved around the triune Godhead. This is another question you ask regarding September Letters. The Triune Godhead is this: Transcendent, Cosmic, Individual. It is as simple as that. But there is so much in this little triadic formula. Because, you see, these Powers have never INCARNATED together, in an unbroken line, before. And it is only when this shift takes place, from two to three, that we move out of LINEAR perception and into the spherical consciousness of Unity. This sounds simple enough. However, it is pregnant with a revolutionising content. Let me go further.

     In terms of Numbers the above makes all the difference in the world. You see, from very ancient times sages had perceived that Number held the key to almost everything. The Greeks themselves had perceived this, to the point where Plato, I believe, claimed that God only geometrises, that Number was the essence of creation and that through Number we could come to know God.

But what was the block in their perception? It was the failure to understand or to ‘see’ the Zero. And why had they failed to ‘see’ the Zero? Because this triune manifestation had not occurred yet. And why? Simply because ‘the time had not yet come’

Now, remember the words the Mother heard at the time of the Supramental Manifestation on 29 February 1956? They were, ‘The time has come.’ This sounds plain enough and easy enough to explain. Yes, the time has now come. But again there is much more to this simple message. TIME HAD COME. The ability via the channels of Time to give form to that highest Truth. This could only be done with Time as an ally, and on the basis of a complete shift regarding the seeing of Number and its relation to the Creative Power and its subsequent formulation. That shift concerned the question of Unity: unity could no longer be expressed as ‘the One’. It was the Zero.

Here I am not giving you ‘drops’ but the whole truth. Yet you could never appreciate what this means, therefore it must be, for you, just drops. But when I write ‘you’ I mean everyone on this planet today. That may sound like an exaggeration, but, believe me, I have very sound reasons to be able to make this apparently outlandish statement  . The reason is that this simple ‘shift’ marks the threshold between the old and the new consciousness, between the overmind and the Supermind, between the old way and the new way, between a world of relativism and a perception of absolutism.

The latter brings us to an important point. What I have written, equipped with this formula, in The New Way and in all my other books concerns absolute truth. Therefore it has this quality of definiteness and unquestionable precision, accuracy, fact. And this is what disturbs many people who read my books, especially The New Way. No one feels comfortable with Absolutes. Our civilisation is constructed around a ‘relative centre’. This is the Nothingness that is supposed to hold it together. This is where science has carried us: relativity, quantum ‘unpredictable’ physics, and all the rest. We are comfortable with that because it allows us to continue as we are. If everything is relative, anything can be true. But when you pick up a work like The New Way, how do you accommodate this poise? I mean, how can you be comfortable with all those unbelievable facts of events having already taken place in Time, in this exquisite pattern, and still hold on to the Doubt, which is the child of relativism? It is impossible. Either you agree to make this shift, or else you put the book (and all my work) aside and you simply admit that it is not for you… There are other, more wicked ways of dealing with this problem. You can destroy that Truth that makes you feel so uncomfortable. Such is the nature of fear…


Back to the Zero. From ancient times sages had seen unity as One. Isn’t it beautiful: the One is a LINEAR figure. The Zero is circular. Again, ‘the symbol is the thing symbolised’, this time regarding number symbols, or figures. This fact, that unity was equated with the One, may seem irrelevant or of little importance; but it describes the collapse of our civilisation; while the shift to the perception of unity as the Zero describes the new creation and its spherically perceiving consciousness.

Put another way, what this means is that we have torn a veil. We have pushed perception back, beyond the manifest One. You see, the One is the Fourth not the first – if you understand what I mean. Before that Fourth, who is the One, or the point in space, there are the three powers of the Zero, 9, 6, and 3. Never before had this been perceived, because these Powers had not incarnated in a connected Line. This is what is so special about the 9th Manifestation. Can we have any greater Grace than to be born now, when this is taking place? But those who would freeze Sri Aurobindo’s work at the manifestation of just the first two Powers, would wish to impede us from enjoying and living this fullest truth of the Age. Z had asked about Tao and its relation to my work. Yes, I answered, there is a relation. But, you see, in Tao also there is a truth that was incomplete. They saw the world built on two principles, Yin and Yang. And there was a twist in that perception precisely because it was incomplete. Yang is, for the taoist, the creative power; but it is masculine. Whereas in India you have ‘everything in its place’: the Shakti is that Creative Power – the feminine kinetic principle, the formative Power of the Supreme. Why have they seen THAT? Because, remember, they also ‘saw’ the Zero. India gave the Zero to the world. She could only do so if she had seen its truth. When you are dealing with Numbers you are dealing with truths of perception, with expanses of consciousness, with seeings of absoluteness.

What are the difficulties I face? I have to bring the Absolute Truth into a world of relativism, into a civilisation of relativity perception. That is, I have to unveil the Being in the Becoming. To do this I have had to change the direction of the perception: into the Core where the seat of Absolute Truth is lodged, in the individual and in creation. This is why I place so much emphasis on the direction of the quest. It may seem irrelevant in a world that believes ‘all paths lead to God’. There is no path today except this one that leads to the Core. To describe the Third properly one must refer to the Core. It is true that Ananda is its quality – but there is so much more to say… If you read Chapter 10 of The Magical Carousel (and the Commentaries), you will understand the relation between the Core and Absolutism better.

…Yes, a number of Yogis in India perceive that ‘something’ is happening in India and in the world. But my experience has been that most are still bogged down in the mire of the Kali Yuga perception: we are in the Kali Yuga and everything is dismal and dark. And that is it. They do not go beyond that. They know that Kalki must come to redeem the situation, but they are bogged down there too because they have misseen  and put the Buddha at the 9th place in the line of Ten Avatars, so this has thrown them off. What is amusing is that the old seers claimed that the Buddha, even though he was the 9th Avatar, was a ‘ruse of the Supreme’ to ‘mislead seekers’. For reasons best known to them! Indeed, this misplacement has been misleading seekers for 2000 years! I am trying to ‘put order’ into this chaos, and to ‘put each thing in its place’. But is there any real interest? They are now embarking upon a major work, an encyclopaedia of Hinduism. I’ll bet you that even in this colossal, comprehensive work they will request some scholarly sage to write about the Ten Avatars and he will produce an article for this encyclopaedia that will continue to put the Buddha at the 9th position! And so, the falsehood gets repeated and the seekers keep getting led astray by that rascal of Buddha! It is comical.

Enough of ‘absolute truth’ … (14.4.1989)


‘The Secret of Immortal Life’

…It is a period of great difficulties, attacks, very meticulously planned, very hard to deal with since there are so many levels. I can understand why Sri Aurobindo and the Mother shared different aspects of the Work. For one person the immensity of it all is sometimes too much – so many levels and activities. One needs a great deal of precise Knowledge to be able to survive this period.

       You know, it is the last battle before the final and irrevocable reversal. The Falsehood seeks not only to hold its own but to gain more. Because EXPANSION, ACCELERATION are the keywords now. Whoever does not move forward, falls back; and the ground is lost to the Lord of Falsehood. There is a last-ditch attempt to arrest the Divine Advance. So, the times are indeed hard. But I wonder how many can see this? They are all so much trapped in the ego-consciousness. There is no wideness, no seeing, no true surrender to THAT. Alas, even in the best. It is indeed very difficult for the human being, this time of transition.

I can see you moving through the next cycle, 1989-98, with comparative ease, if you want, if something in you does not ‘decide’ to leave earlier. It all depends on the inner poise and that willingness to MOVE FORWARD. Inertia in such cases – indeed, in all cases – is the real and true Enemy. But Inertia is not overcome by noise and frenzy and wasted energy. Inertia is overcome by a special poise which puts us OUT OF ITS REACH, which places us in a dimension where the hold of Inertia simply does not exist.

Before, the way was to escape this force by dissolving the element that represents our connection to life, in time and space and on this planet. Then it was easy. Now, for us, it is not so easy because we are not permitted these escapes. So, we have to discover the Secret of Immortal Life. This means, we have to find the way to REALIGN that Core so that it can no longer be dissolved. Do you understand what I mean?

This is why in my work I am always stressing the NEW DIRECTION: into the Core. The consciousness must be so poised, so centred as to bring about an unveiling of that Point which has never been a part of the evolutionary experience before. This Point is centremost to the Core in our inner beings. A realignment permits that Point, or the One, or Agni, to uphold ‘our journey’ on the path of Immortality. This is the secret of that mysterious ‘Immortality Day’, – indeed, the day Sri Aurobindo gave you your name so many, many years ago…             (19.5.1989)



* *

‘…Beautiful is the face of the Divine Mother, but she too can be hard and terrible. Nay, then, is immortality a plaything to be given lightly to a child, or the divine life a prize without effort or the crown for a weakling? Strive rightly and thou shalt have; trust and thy trust shall in the end be justified; but the dread Law of the Way is there and none can abrogate it.’

Sri Aurobindo
‘The Way’, CE, Vol. 17, p. 40.


‘Nothing can arise from Nothing. Asat, nothingness, is a creation of our mind; where it cannot see or conceive, where its object is something beyond its grasp, too much beyond to give even the sense of a vague intangible, then it cries out, “Here there is nothing.” Out of its own incapacity it has created the conception of a zero. But what in truth is this zero? It is an incalculable infinite.

‘Our sense by its incapacity has invented darkness. In truth there is nothing but Light, only it is a power of light either above or below our poor human vision’s limited range.

‘For do not imagine that light is created by the Suns. The Suns are only physical concentrations of Light, but the splendour they concentrate for us is self-born and everywhere.

‘God is everywhere and wherever God is, there is Light…’.

Sri Aurobindo
‘The Web of Yoga’, CE, Vol. 17, p. 48.


Fission and Fusion

I have always sustained that the course the evolution of consciousness takes on this planet is easily discernible in a host of ordinary developments. That is, we can, when equipped with the proper keys of higher knowledge and trained to see in a new way, assess not only WHERE we are headed as a civilisation but also at which point we stand in this transitional period. This assessment can be made even by a simple perusal of the daily newspapers over a period of time.

        But a word of caution should be given in this regard. Decades ago a reading room where newspapers were kept was opened in the Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Pondicherry for disciples, and the Mother was asked to give the room a name. It was her custom to name virtually everything that came into being in the Ashram as a means, it would seem, of putting a specific force into the object or enterprise which would render it thereafter a channel for that special force to operate, in the area indicated by the name itself. Since newspapers were kept in this particular reading room, the Mother named it ‘La Salle du Mensonge’, or ‘The Room of Falsehood’.

This may seem offensive to certain champions of the press. However, one need only assess the situation carefully to realise that our newspapers, while playing a necessary role, are also responsible for nailing the human being more firmly onto his cross of atavism. As a civilisation we are far from realising the dream of a society well informed but on the basis of unbiased and non-manipulative information; and which, at the same time, can serve society in its upward march to a higher expression. In general, newspapers cater to the baser instincts, claiming that ‘this is what the public wants to read’. At the same time, they are organs for various economic and political ideologies to spread their messages. This is often done in a camouflaged manner, to such an extent that indoctrination is carried out often entirely undetected by the reader. We are all aware of the fact that the news is manipulated and that this is done in such a way that it is impossible to perceive, making it therefore a very dangerous and potent tool.

Be this as it may, one can read the daily newspapers for an assessment of the condition of our transformative work and certain gains we have made. I have proven this point off and on by reproducing news items in Indian and foreign papers to demonstrate how these reports support our work by adding the precious qualities of actuality and realism which demonstrate how symbols can be the things symbolised, often in more powerful ways than we could come across in spiritual texts. And so, these ‘organs of falsehood’, like many other aspects of a dying world order, can also be used to reach the ultimate goal of a higher expression for the human being. The negative, at this point in the process, is seen to be ‘at the service of truth’.


Recently newspapers throughout the world have been carrying front page reports about the latest discovery on the energy front. In the context of our work this new development is perhaps the most exciting and important ‘symbol’ yet to materialise. In my view it is second only to the discovery of the newest triad of planets and the superb pattern their discoveries revealed (see The Gnostic Circle, Chapter 12). However, in the recent discovery we move from the planets to the Sun itself and hence the symbolism is something CENTRAL and not peripheral. We are moving steadily ever closer to the Source. We are dealing with Essence and the essential fibre of being, both in the individual and the collectivity. I refer to the discovery of cold fusion as the newest source of energy generation.

In Volume 1 of The New Way, I wrote that we could use energy sources as symbols in the shift humanity is making to a higher level. Until very recently all energy generation came through sources in the Earth itself, such as the various fossil fuels. Or else, power generated by elements the Earth supports in her atmosphere and on her body – wind, water, and so forth.

However, this has begun to change, and this change occurred, as usual, right on time – that is, in the just harmony of gnostic time. To illustrate, we may once again review the situation prevailing on the world stage as reported in our daily newspapers, but with the keys of knowledge the new way provides. We will see that certain crises we have experienced served to hasten or to force the shift I am describing.

Thus, in 1973 there was a severe global energy breakdown. It marked a devastating ‘before’ and ‘after’. The price of oil soared, and, what was worse, it became clear that certain nations possessing this precious commodity could hold other nations at ransom. The memory of the 1973 oil crunch is still vivid and the changes in lifestyle which it forced on people in different parts of the world still prevail. At the same time, it was this crisis that forced a more serious search for alternate energy sources. The discoveries made today have their origin in that 1973-4 breakdown.

My own yoga and work revealed that on the world scene one of the truest symbols of the new way and this great change that stands before us as a civilisation was a direct turn to the Sun as our energy provider, in more ways than one. Nuclear power is an expression of that turn. However, atomic energy was only one aspect of the story – the destructive part, or the facet of this symbolism which reveals how the old consciousness has contaminated this vital area. The true way had not yet surfaced. Nuclear power on the basis of fission has proven to be a tool of devastation and destruction. I am not merely referring to the weapons which have been born of this experience. These are perhaps minor aspects of the problem. There is another far more essential one, and it provides us with a superb example of the interconnection of things: fission is a tool of destruction because it engenders wastes which poison the planet beyond repair. The factor of accumulative poisonous wastes is the clearest indication of the inadequacy of fission as a solution to the world’s energy needs.

In 1977, while discussing the applied symbolism of energy sources – that is, energy as a symbol of mass movements of consciousness within the evolutionary framework – I wrote in Volume 1 of The New Way that prior to any breakthrough in the physical dimension there has to be a breakthrough in the realm of consciousness and the spirit. And, conversely, that science was pushing spirituality toward these breakthroughs by its accelerated pace in the discovery of new technologies. It was clear to me then, and it became even clearer with the passage of time, that the real cause of our distress can be traced to the spirituality the world has known. Unless a breakthrough occurred there, I wrote, science could not be held responsible for its misuse of knowledge. And I described the breakthroughs Sri Aurobindo and the Mother had made to permit this advance. On pages 8 and 9 of Volume 1, I wrote:

‘In this way we see that when there was an initial breakthrough in the field of spiritual research in the 1920s, a plunge into the hidden body of the Supramental Sun, carrying the very physical body along with the intent to expose even the cells of our bodies and the atoms of our Earth’s atmosphere to the highest pitch of solar power attainable at that point of time, Science followed shortly after and in the third and fourth decades of this century breakthroughs occurred in physical research which brought the secrets of the material energy naked before the eye of the scientist. The true knowledge of the Sun is no longer confined to the occult experience of a few; rather science begins to bring forth the knowledge of its source of power to the entire humanity.

‘In our own days we see that events in the world are forcing the planet’s races to turn more fully in this direction. The energy crisis of recent times [1973] is bringing man to realise the imperative need to solve the current great enigma, that of an economical, practical and safe utilisation of solar fusion power, and thus to satisfy the needs of the planet in this matter…’


The time has come for this breakthrough. In the context of the new cosmology, nuclear energy comes under the rule of Pluto. This year, 1989, of 9 power (1+9+8+9=27=2+7=9), corresponds to the 9th planet of the solar system, Pluto. But this is no ordinary 9-power year of the rule of Pluto. Each 9 year introduces a new ennead, or cycle of 9 years; but the difference now is that this enneateric cycle from 1989 to 1998 comprises the decade of the 90s which is the period in this century of the culmination of Pluto’s influence and power. In other words, matters belonging to the domain of the 9th planet will come to the fore and essential issues will be resolved, or at least set on their definitive way to a final and lasting solution.

Thus, 1989 is, according to the harmony of gnostic time, the correct moment for a breakthrough in fusion to occur. In addition, this breakthrough was announced at the March equinox, another felicitous timing. However, the exact day the news broke – 23.3.1989 – was an 8-power day; consequently, we know that something else must transpire before the discovery can be consolidated. The inconclusiveness of the announcement and the brouhaha it is engendering in the world of science may be a part of that working-out process the 8 demands in order to clear the way for the 9. We may therefore expect this situation to continue throughout the remainder of the year.

Another interesting point is the reaction produced by the announcement of this ‘economical, practical and safe utilisation of…fusion power’, for it highlights the hold the old consciousness has over humanity. Two branches of science are presently set at severe odds against each other – chemistry and physics. The physicists are finding it difficult to accept that this breakthrough could have occurred outside a domain which they consider to be their exclusive property. The statements one reads in the newspapers in this regard indicate a rather vicious outburst which makes us question whether or not physicists actually have the good of humanity at heart. Their concern seems to be more for the fact that they have been excluded, rather than the truth or not of the breakthrough. But there is something else to consider, of more serious consequences.

In the portion of The New Way cited above, I wrote of an ‘economical’ usage. It is immensely interesting to note that the potential breakthrough filled this qualification beyond all expectation. And this seems to be a factor that has provoked a number of research institutions to criticise the new discovery with undue severity.

Nearly two months have passed since the announcement and in this period dozens of researchers have sought to verify the claims put forth. One reads headlines such as this, from the New York Times: SCRUTINY OF FUSION EXPERIMENT PRODUCES FEW BELIEVERS AMONG PHYSICISTS (April 16, 1989). Or else this more recent one from the Indian paper, The Hindu: STEADY RESULTS FROM COLD FUSION TESTS (May 8, 1989). It seems this is becoming like the elusive AIDS virus! In this case it is the ‘elusive neutron!’. But perhaps the inability to reach firm conclusions stems from an unwillingness to accept exclusion from the achievement, and by consequence two decades of wasteful expenditure.

Taxpayers in the West have waited patiently for a breakthrough in fusion as their governments pour billions of dollars into research.  The taxpayer has funded extravagantly costly research which can only serve to make the end product equally costly.  But in the new discovery, provided it does produce the energy claimed by its discoverers, the question of an inexpensive source of energy is perfectly fulfilled.  Interestingly, this fact more than any other, it would seem, has engendered disproportionate hostility from those quarters into which billions have been channeled for what may prove to have been a useless and impractical enterprise.

Thus, we come to another aspect of the old consciousness in contrast to the new: the old ‘creates’ but in such a manner that it produces ‘wastes’; and to such a degree that the benefits are ultimately cancelled out when a certain threshold is crossed. This critical threshold has been reached and as a civilisation we must come to terms with its implications.


The Gnostic Circle and the Evolutionary Mechanism

The phrase that best indicates the nature of this threshold is ‘creation or destruction’. In past articles I have emphasised the distinction that must now be made in the light of new attainments in the Yoga. It is the difference between DESTRUCTION and DISSOLUTION. I would like to discuss this to some extent, but the focus of the present article is rather the actual mechanism which distinguishes the old from the new in its cosmic and evolutionary workings.

To illustrate, I shall give a brief presentation of the manner in which the new cosmos operates. And once again we shall investigate the BINARY nature of the old creation in order to comprehend better the essential differences between the two and the changes that must come about before the new creation can truly become a reality on Earth. Thus, one essential ingredient in a new cosmos based on an integral creation is that it must have a single ‘centre’, like the Sun in our solar system. This centre/sun maintains the system or cosmos not by feeding off its orbiting, peripheral bodies, but simply by its presence or being. It is Being, as a result of IMMOBILITY which holds the cosmos together. This is the definition of an ‘axis’, in this cosmology.

Another distinction must be made at this point. Immobility in terms of an individual’s realisation is not to be confused with equanimity. The latter is largely a psychological condition, whereas immobility is a condition of being. When through the Yoga the new alignment is brought about in one’s consciousness-being, this axis is forged and the realisation of Immobility is achieved.

This condition produces a situation in which there is no collapse, no caving in. In the core of a sun we find this condition and hence it supports the play of its orbiting bodies, creates ORDER and HARMONY and a truly CREATIVE manifestation. Energy in the core comes about by alignment, or a special convergence of ‘orbits’ or ‘directions’, as I have called them. What this superior alignment produces is a self-contained, self-replenishing source of power, hence the Centre does not feed off any other body in its system; or rather, to explain the process more accurately: it does not feed off its own body.

Fusion – the news of the day – produces energy similar to what is believed to transpire in the core of the Sun. This means a process of increase based on union, a joining of elements to create something else, rather than a shattering or a splitting of particles, the method employed in fission.

Let us use the Gnostic Circle to provide a visual image of the different processes, because the Gnostic Circle not only describes essential differences between the two but it relates them to the individual in his or her expansion of consciousness. What I am discussing is not only a global issue or a cosmic phenomenon. In our new creation, where all things are seen to be one, where oneness is the woof and warp of our perception and existence, it is imperative that the difference between fusion and fission be perceived as descriptive of the condition of each individual on the planet. Indeed, because the individual is what he or she is, the world is what it is and the old boundaries we need to exceed are what they have been.

Thus, in the innermost skeleton of the Gnostic Circle – which I have called the Sacred Triangle – there are two ‘points’ that describe fusion and fission and everything that is taking place on the individual and collective level concerning these forms of energy generation. Below, I have made a diagram of the Sacred Triangle, the heart of the Gnostic Circle’s time measure, or the 360º of the circle divided into 9 parts. (Its division into 12 parts is the space measure.) Thus the Sacred Triangle provides the Gnostic Circle with its main foundation, its ‘balancing points’ in time.

The Zero plays a prominent role in the structure. Indeed, without it there could be no Gnostic Circle, or no Golden Rod harmonising time and space directions. In the diagram the 0 corresponds to the Sun as the System’s CENTRE. One does not need to make great leaps of imagination or reasoning to appreciate that the centre of a system must in some way stand apart in the measure of the whole, but at the same time it must provide the focus of the system as well as its supportive power source. The Zero in the new cosmology answers these needs perfectly.

Thus convergence at the apex of the Sacred Triangle of the 9 and the 0 describes fusion. The way this plays itself out in the Circle is that as time moves on and an individual completes any one of the enneateric periods in his/her life, the 0 is met in the return to the 9 Point. That is, a child is born and that moment is the newborn’s 0 Point. Thereafter the infant lives the time experience on this planet and after 9 years, or the completion of the first ennead of life, there is a return to the same point. However, at 9-years old an INCREASE has occurred. One brings to that point the materialised energy which time has consolidated in the growth of the Zero/Seed; or, to convey the action more clearly: the Zero/Seed’s extension in time. Time draws the seeds of itself – contained in the 0 – into manifestation. It extends those seeds into the space of our material universe, forming ‘webs’ therein, or ‘lines’, which are tremendous potential sources of energy. By this simple process the Unmanifest is made manifest, the Absolute objectivises Itself in this act of creation, this ‘unfolding vision’ of the Supreme Consciousness.

Every return to the 9 Point provides the individual with the possibility of an increase, of tapping his or her self-contained Sun-Source of energy, insofar as the 0 and the 9 are one. The 9 is simply the extension of the 0. Thus, the 0/9 convergence in time provides increase and a constant renewal. One taps a source that is inexhaustible, provided, however, that an alignment exists which allows for this regeneration. In the new creation this is the secret to eternal renewal and immortal being.

The Function of the 4.5 Orbit 

The opposite to the 0/9 Point in the Gnostic Circle is the 4.5 Orbit as the following diagram indicates. Thus, added to the Sun and Pluto at the 0/9 Point, we have the Asteroid Belt at the 4.5 Orbit.

It can be observed that this 4.5 Orbit, or the Asteroid Belt between Mars and Jupiter, is not designated by any ‘point’ or angle of the Sacred Triangle, or any other angle of the full Gnostic Circle. It is truly a ‘void’. And it is rendered more so by virtue of the fact that all the lines of the enneagram (which form the 9/Time measure of the Gnostic Circle) seem to converge or indicate this Orbit. The diagram’s structure is such that it draws attention to this spot which, in terms of the visual impact the diagram produces, is a void, having no angle of the Circle’s geometry to ‘fill’ it.

Therefore this Orbit, containing millions of shattered particles and standing as it does in direct opposition to the 0/9 Point of the Sun and Pluto, provides us with a perfect description of fission. It cannot be simpler: the Asteroid Belt falls at this precise position in the Gnostic Circle, and that Orbit is characterised by an infinitude of ‘split particles’, just like the process of fission to generate energy.

We may expect therefore that passage over this Point in a person’s life has the potential of engendering similar ‘toxic wastes’ like the fission splitting of particles engenders. And this reflection carries us to the heart of the matter. The 4.5 Orbit does not indicate INCREASE. Rather, its purpose in the wheel is to produce a collapse or breakdown, a caving in, a shattering. However, this action in a new cosmos, perfectly aligned and balanced on the integral, fourfold foundation of Truth, which is the creation the Gnostic Circle indicates, is restricted to the periphery of the system and specifically those elements which might obstruct the experience proper to the 0/9 Point: acceleration of consciousness-being. Thus, in a new creation, the 4.5 Orbit holds the key to the shift from destruction to dissolution. I shall go deeply into this matter because it provides the secrets of the new world, or this emerging cosmos in which the supramental Sun is central, the inexhaustible fount of pure truth-conscious power and light.

The problem with the old creation was simply its incompleteness. In the lived experience of the race, both physically and spiritually, Whole Time was never known. The conscious experience never reached the 0/9. It was halted at the 6 and the sign Scorpio, the sign of Death. This was the measure of our solar system and it was therefore the measure of the boundaries of the individualised consciousness-being in evolution on this planet, or the blueprint of the present human species. Nothing further could be expected given the limitations of the species’ matrix.

Our times have seen an expansion of that measure, an increase to 9. The problem we face as a civilisation is the effort to live this inexorable expansion. This explains the transition we are in with all its travails.

The area in the Gnostic Circle which described the old creation’s spiritual attainments and goals was the 0º Libra Point, or the 4.5 Orbit. It was the Void with its accompanying Nothingness – a dissolving of the individualised consciousness in the static Peace of the Beyond, a dissolution reminiscent of the shattered particles in the Asteroid Belt, in those airy Libran heights. An undoing of the Self or in the Self was the key and the way. In other words, the 4.5 Orbit was the escape, the elegant exit, the ‘slit’ through which one could pass and experience a disconnection from the temporal and spatial boundaries of our world.

In The Magical Carousel the children, Val and Pom-pom, those explorers of a ‘new way’, enter the sign-land Libra in a magical elevator, which swings to and fro until a certain ‘balance’ is reached. The shaft that holds this elevator suspended in those lofty, airy heights represents the element that keeps them connected to a creation in matter, that keeps them rooted in a material universe in spite of their rise to an apparent Beyond, above the turmoil of the experience they have left below. However, The Magical Carousel describes a voyage of the new creative consciousness with its extended Measure. But in the old world, having attained that dissolution or disconnection from the temporal and the spatial, those boundaries could easily be regarded as illusory, as devoid of any intrinsic reality. Nothingness was the highest truth of the old creation. In India, as in the rest of the world, this situation drove the spiritual seeker onto the path of otherworldliness. I repeat, it was the INCOMPLETENESS of that creation which accounted for this development.

We are now in the 9th Manifestation, an era which began in 234BC and extends for 6480 years thereafter. As in the human gestation, the 9 in this cosmic/planetary sense also indicates a completed process or gestation. Hence it is only in this Manifestation that we may come to know and to live the COMPLETE wheel. Thus, the position in the Gnostic Circle which describes the greater boundary or goal for the new creation living in Whole Time is the 0 [degree] Capricorn Point. It is with the addition of the final quarter of the circle, as a lived experience, that the void is filled.

Another description of the 4.5 action is to become relieved of ‘excess baggage’ during its time period. This is an accumulation which the individual experiences because in the present imperfect alignment of the species, one does not live in Simultaneous Time, as I have called it. Therefore a residue is accumulated as one lives the time experience on Earth and this creates inertia which impedes acceleration. At the 4.5 passage in an ideal condition, a mechanism is set in motion to dissolve these residues.

While on the subject of the 4.5 Orbit, there has been another of those unusual synchronisations in this regard which has so characterised our work. In this context, let me point out that on the very day of the announcement of the fusion breakthrough (real or unreal – this has yet to be established), another happening occurred as if to lend confirmation to the connection I am making between the Asteroid Belt and its relation to the 0/9 and the experience of fission/fusion. On 23 March 1989 a hitherto undetected asteroid made a very close approach to the Earth (astronomically speaking), to such an extent that it made front-page news. This asteroid thus crossed the Earth’s orbit on the day of the fusion announcement; and I must point out that the Gnostic Circle is essentially a description of orbit interrelation and harmony.

In The Magical Carousel, Chapter 10, and its companion volume Commentaries, I have described the Capricorn experience of Simultaneous Time which leaves no residue. In light of the above, those who have read the story can better appreciate the symbolism involved in the Time-Spirit’s rise into the chamber of self-discovery and soul realisation, thus FILLING the empty space in the centre of the floor. I quote here this portion of the tale:


‘…At the moment they feel it all coming to a climax they are thrust into a solitary, isolated chamber of bare walls. Left to themselves in total silence, they tightly hold hands in a frantic need to feel they are not completely alone. But the sense of abandon is strong and almost too much for them. Val and Pom-pom are at a point of utter despair when an insistent, continuous ticking is heard through the heavy silence. The sound increases and increases, becoming louder with each tick until it is right upon them and apparently in their very presence. They begin running round and round the room, passing their hands along the bare walls to make sure there are no secret doors and are soon at the point of exhaustion and collapse on the ground.

‘Lying there in complete stillness they become aware of a hole in the middle of the room, which seems to have been there all the while. The children crawl up to it, peer over the rim and down below they see an old, old man with flowing beard and long white hair, seated at a table with a huge book open before him. Behind him stands a great clock, unusual and unique for there are only three symbols drawn on its face: a minus to the left, a plus to the right and a circle in the middle. But there are no hands pointing anywhere as one would normally expect. The ticking is loud and strong now for it comes from this very clock.

‘As they gaze at the scene below, the old gentleman, table and clock slowly rise into the centre of the room through the hole…’ (p.109).


These symbols explain cosmic processes as well as the individual’s own lived experience in the evolution of consciousness on the planet. Indeed, what is the culmination of Val and Pom-pom’s passage through the Capricorn mountain? The experience they live after the ‘birth that fills the void’ is the immobility I have mentioned earlier as the realisation that sustains the new cosmos. After meeting the Time-Spirit, the children reach the mountaintop, and…

‘A woman sits before them.

‘She is clothed in robes that blend in colour with the mountain, in fact she herself appears to be a continuation of the mountain itself. She sits on the ground with legs crossed and covered by the robes, immobile and breathing ever so slightly, in a manner which makes one feel the physical life in her is suspended. Her face is not old but rather ancient, and her half-closed eyes reveal an understanding that is of the nature of the mountain over which she presides. Omanisol is cloaked in an aura of serenity and strength, of timelessness and intensity, which become a part of the children merely by being in her presence. In the same still attitude, a unicorn sits by her side.

‘The mountain peak is enveloped in the rays of the brightest midday sun, which, however, Val and Pom-pom cannot locate in the sky. This vivid light makes it possible to see over an enormous distance, an unending stretch of land on all sides, revealing every type of landscape – dominated by the abode of Omanisol. As they face this majestic sight and become evermore immersed in the atmosphere of the place, a swell of iridescent, multicoloured smoke appears on the far-off horizon. It moves in their direction, coming with great force, always closer toward the commanding peak on which the children stand. If it were not for Omanisol Val and Pom-pom would surely flee, for the smoke, approaching closer, reveals itself to be a tornado, whirling with mighty power. She gives a maternal feeling of protection, a sort of mother-of-the-spirit, because it seems the state she is in could never be harmed by any outside force, being herself the essence of the rocky mountain…’ (pp.111-12).


The ‘immobility’ Omanisol symbolises is what the ancients sought to convey in the mythological Mt Meru, the ‘axis of the world’. Or what I have called the Stable Constant in relation to the Mother’s rendition of the new Axis – the Inner Chamber of her Temple.

On numerous occasions I have explained how the Mother’s original plan of the inner chamber provides us with all the keys of knowledge required to make the transition a conscious participation. The aspect of conscious participation, I have emphasised, is the essential feature, distinguishing the old species from the new. The chamber Val and Pom-pom enter is the Mother’s chamber, and it contains the same keys of knowledge. It is also their initiation into the experience of conscious participation, for in their meeting with the Time-Spirit, he asks them:


‘“Who  are you?’ the man asks.

‘”Val. Pom-pom,” they reply.

‘“I ask: who are you?” he insists.

‘”But we told you,” says Val.

‘”That is not your identity.”’ (p.110)


And then the Time-Spirit proceeds to reveal their ‘identity’ by consulting the Book of Life in which the destiny of each soul is written. With this knowledge of the truth of who they are, the children can then continue their journey and return to Earth to fulfil their mission.

Val and Pom-pom enter the chamber by a rise through the floor; similarly, we find in the Mother’s original plan of her Chamber that entrance was intended by her to be through the floor, by a rise (unlike the modified version in Auroville). And there is a ‘descent’ – the ladder with its numerous rungs representing gradations, levels of consciousness, planes. It permits the children to reach Omanisol’s mountaintop realm and is equivalent to the descending solar Ray in the Mother’s chamber (‘…the symbol of the future realisation…’). Likewise, the Chamber’s Ray permits the ascent to the immobile Omanisol in that it is the measure of the year, equally with its many ‘levels’ (of time), for the Rig Veda tells us that those realms or states of consciousness or planes are ‘opened’ to us by the months and the years. Using Time as an ally now – meaning the conscious participation in the evolutionary process – the passage of the year provides us with the FUEL and the FIELD for our Yoga, when we are able to make this passage CONSCIOUSLY on the backdrop of the Gnostic Circle.

The Core which ‘fills the void’ describes the new centre in the gnostic being, by virtue of which he or she can know immortal being. The Core is the inner mechanism of the superior species which will one day fully populate the Earth. The Globe is the new and luminous centre, while the four-cornered Pedestal is the new and perfect alignment which supports the newly unveiled Centre/Globe. Hence there is no collapse, no possibility of any caving in or seepage of energy. It is because of this Knowledge, so central to the new creation, that I sought fruitlessly for a number of years to have the alignment corrected in the Matrimandir in Auroville, not to speak of the hole in the centre of the room which stands as a superb symbol of the old ‘void’ into which energy collapses. A different and superior alignment is the only way for the new species to come into existence. This is the method to bring into being a CREATIVE manifestation and to emerge once and for all from the boundaries of the old world, founded on the principle of Destruction.

The ‘Power’ of Cult Figures or Objects of Devotion

In the old creation, in the binary system, the method for survival and continuity was actually usurpation of energy. The dark sun drew the energy to itself and ‘hoarded’ it. This was and is the secret of its power. Therefore in the old way devotion was necessary, or projection onto an external object of veneration.

     But the Mother understood the coming change and that her plan of the inner chamber represented a higher state. Hence, she commanded that there should be no photographs of herself and Sri Aurobindo in the room. On the other hand, all cult figures in the world thrive on this mechanism of usurpation, no doubt as an unconscious condition. For how can they know? To understand this mechanism is to become immediately an instrument for the great change, a position very few objects of worship are willing to assume. For the power in the Bhakta is drawn in to increase the object’s power. And this is ‘hoarded’, simply because it goes into the void ultimately; it is not used to INCREASE. This makes the cult figure truly powerful, and most are impressed with this power. But there is no means to extend that power through the system at crucial moments so as to prevent collapse – that is, decay, destruction, death. There are too many gaps in the old system. Indeed, to put it bluntly, there is no system at all, no ‘cosmos’, in the real sense of the word.

By consequence, a projection onto a symbol of worship was and is necessary in such a creation. But it has solved nothing permanently in our collapsing world. It has served simply to assuage the human being for a time.

These paths, cults, religions, could survive in the old creation for as long as the Time-Spirit allowed. That is, until the real and final collapse of the old world. This is happening now. The mechanism is clear, the process based on a negative intake into a void, as part of a binary system, continuously drained the system seeking to replenish its energy. The gaps – because the system had no complete fourfold foundation or base – permitted seepages. All our systems of energy generation reflect this situation. The environmental collapse reflects this: we deplete faster than what we replace; we pollute and destroy our atmosphere faster than we can repair it; we create poisons in greater quantities than we can effectively dispose of. A threshold is reached in this final ennead and then the collapse is total and irrevocable.

This means that the periphery of the system is drained of energy which is plunged into the void. There is no replenishing because of the binary structure. While there might be a light sun in the system, the dark sun balances it out and serves to limit the effect it might have. The energy in the periphery that goes to sustain the light sun (because this is the process in the old creation) is usurped by the dark Companion and then precipitated into the void.

As stated, in the youthful stages of a creation – human or otherwise – this process goes undetected because there is an exuberance of energy. There is a surplus. Hence there is no compulsion either to see the true process or to rectify it. It passes undetected. It is only in times like our own when critical thresholds are reached that we are compelled to look at the position we find ourselves in as a race and a civilisation and seek to understand. When a creation reaches maturity introspection becomes imperative. This denotes a coming of age.

In the evolution of consciousness on Earth we have reached such a threshold. People everywhere and in all fields are seeking to know how we can arrest the imminent collapse. But the problem is none know the mechanism. By consequence, they neither know what is truly responsible for the collapse nor the means to arrest it.

Everything undergoes a radical change in the new cosmos. There a central Sun stands alone in a unitary system. Thus there is no dark sun feeding off its binary companion. Depletion does not exist in the new cosmos. The mechanism is constantly CREATIVE, never destructive. The sole reason is that there is no void at the centre. There is an upholding POINT.

What this signifies is that the Centre does not need to draw energy from the system, from ITS BODY, to feed itself; as, for example, if the human being stops all intake of food the body consumes itself until it perishes. Rather, the Centre’s function is merely to uphold the play and to provide the divine and binding Purpose; while its immobile poise allows each thing to find its true place. (‘…Who are you? The Time-Spirit asks…’). The result is no gaps, no drain, no seepage. Nothing falls into the Void.

Thus, in such a creation one issue above all others assumes primary importance: each thing in its place. That is, ORDER, COSMOS.

The system contains an abundant supply of power to maintain itself. This power is ever present. It is the play of forces in the system which the Centre does not require for ‘food’, and then to experience collapse. The unitary system has a Sun that holds it together by an entirely different mechanism. Truly it is a new world that is born: it is self-supportive. It generates energy within itself and does not require any outer source; and by virtue of the formula – each thing in its place – those energies are rightly utilised to create, never to destroy. It has a CORE, and in that Core the process of fusion provides it with a limitless source and no poisonous wastes. But it is a core proper to each particle or element in the creation. Each individual member of such a society has a ‘core’, a perennially replenishing inner source.

The 4.5, or the ‘Hidden Manna’                                    

To return to the Gnostic Circle’s formulation, the 4.5 Orbit depicted the goal of the mental species; and indeed it is the threshold to the third quarter of the wheel, the mental (Libra, Scorpio, Sagittarius). This incompletion, this arresting of the movement of consciousness at the halfway mark with its consequent shattering and ultimate collapse, engendered poisonous wastes, similar to the fission process of energy generation. In other words, proceeding along these lines it is inevitable that we reach the critical threshold and those poisons overtake, overwhelm and finally destroy the creation which has provided the field for this inferior experience. In other words, it is in the process of energy generation that poisons and toxins come about. We must bear this in mind because, as I shall demonstrate, the 4.5 which now stands as an insatiable void, must be remade into our source of unending ‘fuel’.

Our civilisation reflects this destructive principle. The human race itself, with its decay and death and, above all, its atavism which lies at the root of the problem of overpopulation, is an expression of the inferior alignment and incompletion of the old creation. In overpopulation we see the same process: the act of procreation has become another tool of destruction. We see that a more conscious process must replace the present method of continuity of the species – failing which, overpopulation will lay waste all our attempts to improve the living conditions of this great mass of human beings.

On the environmental front we seek to educate society, explaining that to continue destroying our forests, polluting our seas and the water we drink and destroying the atmosphere in hitherto unimaginable ways spells the extinction of the human race. However, no amount of education seems to have any effect on the situation. The critical threshold is reached in this area, as in all others. All things are connected and do find their ultimate convergence in time. We wonder, therefore, if it will be possible to prevent the collapse we know lies just around time’s corner.

The point is, is there another possibility and sufficient time for it to overtake the movement of collapse? Is it possible for the human species to transcend its present ego-pivoted limitation and bring into being right now a higher species, truly centred?

The reason why passage through the 4.5 Orbit in the past engendered poisonous wastes which produced decay and ultimate death is that there was no Core in the species, as described in the Mother’s chamber. Therefore there was nothing to hold the consciousness-being together during the phase of acceleration, which is essential for the emergence of a higher species. Consciousness is speeded up; at the same time the material substance of our physical bodies is proportionately accelerated. On this basis regeneration is engendered and collapse is avoided. But without a core – or a centre in perfect alignment, or resulting from a perfect alignment – this process cannot be lived on the planet. Everything is too dense, too heavy, too slow. Inertia holds the movement in check to the point where when the threshold is reached time is swallowed up by various layers of our physical beings and the resultant gaps are the areas of collapse. For this reason I have written earlier that the web time weaves in our lives holds in its lines tremendous energy. It is this power which we must liberate so that it can be our fuel in the acceleration of consciousness-being. The Gnostic Circle is a map of this precious play of energy which is the birthright of every individual born on this planet. The Gnostic Circle explains the method for releasing that energy.

At this point in evolution we bear encumbrances which are the tools of Inertia to check our ‘speed’, to keep us within the boundaries of the human mental species. They impede us from living the experience of Whole Time, or the conscious passage through the final quarter of the Gnostic Circle, starting with the sign Capricorn. In The New Way, Volume 2, page 495, I have presented a fascinating diagram the Mother drew for a disciple: a circle divided into 9 parts which she indicated contained real occult power and knowledge. Apart from the fact that the 9 division of the Circle has been our major key of knowledge, the subtle details of her drawing explicitly confirm just what I am describing in these pages: at the 4.5 the true experience brings release of this tremendous Energy, the fuel for the acceleration which carries us to new frontiers.

I am presenting here a replica of the diagram. The shaded area is the 4.5 Orbit, and it stretches up to the 0/9 Point. Thus the Mother, in this simplest of fashions, disclosed or brought into the open what the Enneagram hinted at but left to the seeker to discover: that is, the true ‘gold’ lies in this area, but seen in connection to the apex of 0/9, just as the Mother has indicated. The question is, How do we release that energy?

In addition, as a further confirmation, the Mother gave colours to the 9 petals in the design. The circumscribing 8 were all silver; only the 4.5 area up to the apex was gold (the shaded area in the sketch). And in this way I have shown once again how the legacy the Mother left us by way of diagrams, plans, symbols, etc, indisputably confirms the knowledge of this New Way.


The world we know is a product of the limitations Inertia imposes. Therefore, no amount of education will arrest the destruction set in motion thousands of years ago. The only way to counteract the collapse of our planet and the extinction of the species is to introduce the higher one, by realignment of our consciousness-being so that a core comes into existence which can keep the consciousness centred and ‘held together’ during the acceleration time is producing.

This is the true nature of the critical threshold we face. The present human structure cannot sustain the influx, the increase of energies which the extended boundaries of our solar system is FORCING upon us. When those increases or influxes occur they serve to hasten the collapse rather than bring salvation by virtue of acceleration. At the same time, for those who bear the Core within, and for the new creation at whose heart there stands that Core/Centre, the increase, though initially hard to bear and negative in appearance, must serve the Core and fulfil its inherent divine Purpose.

The immobile Axis of the Capricorn realisation opens the way to the final quarter of the Circle. It is the area of the ‘extended boundaries’ of our consciousness-being, both individually and collectively, without which the Energy released at the 4.5 Orbit would have no enlarged field for its play. The cramped condition of our species’ structure is the reason why the release of the 4.5 does not produce acceleration but rather a turn back upon itself. It is as if in the forward thrust it were to meet an iron wall.

This helps us to understand why the collapse gains momentum when we come to the critical threshold of time: the increase – which is proportionate to the extension of the system’s boundaries – thrusts great quantities of ‘fuel’ into the system. But if the boundaries are not effectively extended that acceleration creates a tremendous impact. There is a heightening of calamitous happenings. Thus just before the new Dawn actually manifests there is perforce an appearance of a more intense darkening of the light. We have the impression not only that no new gains have been made but that we stand to lose the little from the past that we manage to carry over into the time of transition.

In The Magical Carousel and the sign-land Aquarius, following Capricorn, the two children experience the condition of civilisation in the time of transition. They are swept up from Omanisol’s mountain-top by a terrific force and thrust into the centre of what appears to be a huge tornado:

‘…Whipping around at tremendous speed, it forms a vast array of iridescent colours and vibrations creating the most beautiful musical sounds. And what is more, myriads of objects swirl around them on all sides, in fact, everything that goes to make up cities and civilisations: entire buildings, motor vehicles, everything down to the smallest objects. It looks as though the ferocious tornado had destroyed the entire land it passed through. From where has this force arisen and where is it taking them?’  (p.113)


Thereafter they are swept down with all the debris into a huge container, and there they come into contact with the consciousness of a dying world:


‘…A very frightening noise and uproar begins, making the whole vat resound and almost shattering them by the vibrations that penetrate their little bodies. It appears to come from all the ruins of the buildings, houses, etc., that inhabit the container along with them. Soon it develops into a whining, pitiful drone and then the children understand they are listening to the anguished cries of all humanity that had been swept away by the destructive current.

‘What can they do? How can they help these people? And in fact, where are they – for no one can be seen?…’       (p.115)


And the tale continues with the description of the way in which Val and Pom-pom are passed through an ‘accelerator’ and then sent on their way to fulfil their Earthly mission, while the Water Carrier chants through the cosmos…

‘Flow, waters of the spirit,
flow through the ether to our brothers of the universe,
awaken the hearts of mankind, for the

NEW ERA has dawned!’


Skambha, May of 1989

The Object of Our Yoga, Sri Aurobindo


The Object of Our Yoga

 Sri Aurobindo


The object of our Yoga is self-perfection, not self-annulment.

There are two paths set for the feet of the Yogin, withdrawal from the universe and perfection in the universe; the first comes by asceticism, the second is effected by tapasya; the first receives us when we lose God in Existence, the second is attained when we fulfil Existence in God. Let ours be the path of perfection, not of abandonment; let our aim be victory in the battle, not the escape from all conflict.

Buddha and Shankara supposed the world to be radically false and miserable; therefore escape from the world was to them the only wisdom. But this world is Brahman, the world is God, the world is Satyam, the world is Ananda; it is our misreading of the world through mental egoism that is a falsehood and our wrong relation with God in the world that is a misery. There is no other falsity and no other cause of sorrow.

God created the world in Himself through Maya; but the Vedic meaning of Maya is not illusion, it is wisdom, knowledge, capacity, wide extension in consciousness… Omnipotent Wisdom created the world, it is not the organised blunder of some Infinite Dreamer; omniscient Power manifests or conceals it in Itself for Its own delight, it is not a bondage imposed by His own ignorance on the Free and absolute Brahman.

If the world were Brahman’s self-imposed nightmare, to awake from it would be the natural and only goal of our supreme endeavour; or if life in the world were irrevocably bound to misery, a means of escape from this bondage would be the sole secret worth discovering. But perfect truth in world-existence is possible; for God here sees all things with the eye of truth; and perfect bliss in the world is possible; for God enjoys all things with the sense of unalloyed freedom. We can also enjoy this truth and bliss, called by the Veda amrtam, Immortality, if by casting away our egoistic existence into perfect unity with His being we consent to receive the divine perception and the divine freedom.

The world is a movement of God in His own being; we are the centres and knots of divine consciousness which sum up and support the processes of His movement. The world is His play with His own self-conscious delight, He who alone exists, infinite, free and perfect; we are the self-multiplications of that conscious delight, thrown out into being to be His playmates. The world is a formula, a rhythm, a symbol-system expressing God to Himself in His own consciousness, – it has no material existence but exists only in His consciousness and self-expression; we, like God, are in our inward being That which is expressed, but in our outward being terms of that formula, notes of that rhythm, symbols of that system. Let us lead forward God’s movement, play out His play, work out His formula, execute His harmony, express Him through our selves in His system. That is our joy and our self-fulfilment; to this end we who transcend and exceed the universe, have entered into universe-existence.

Perfection has to be worked out, harmony has to be accomplished. Imperfection, limitation, death, grief, ignorance, matter, are only the first terms of the formula – unintelligible till we have worked out the wider terms and reinterpreted the formulary; they are the initial discords of the musician’s tuning. Out of imperfection we have to construct perfection, out of limitation to discover infinity, out of death to find immortality, out of grief to recover divine bliss, out of ignorance to rescue divine self-knowledge, out of matter to reveal spirit. To work out this end for ourselves and for humanity is the object of our Yogic practice.

The Hour of God

CE, Vol.17, p. 49.