The importance of the body is obvious; it is because he has developed or been given a body and brain capable of receiving and serving a progressive mental illumination that man has risen above the animal. Equally, it can only be by developing a body or at least a functioning of the physical instrument capable of receiving and serving a still higher illumination that he will rise above himself and realise, not merely in thought and in his internal being but in life, a perfectly divine manhood. Otherwise either the promise of Life is cancelled, its meaning annulled and earthly being can only realise Sachchidananda by abolishing itself, by shedding from it mind, life and body and returning to the pure Infinite, or else man is not the divine instrument, there is a destined limit to the consciously progressive power which distinguishes him from all other terrestrial existences and as he has replaced them in the front of things, so another must eventually replace him and assume his heritage.

— Sri Aurobindo

A Body Moved by the Supreme Will

Yesterday or the day before, something was saying to me, "This is how the consciousness of a dead person regards the earth and physical things. You're a dead person living on the earth!"

Yet I went on speaking, working, doing things as usual.

I don't know how to explain it because there's nothing mental about this, and non-mental sensations have a vagueness that's hard to describe. But today it came again two or three time, a sort of extremely strong impression: "I am a dead person living on the earth."

How can I explain that?

With eyesight, for instance, the objective precision is missing. I see through the consciousness. Everything is behind a kind of very luminous mist and suddenly something stands out, absolutely clear and precise.

With hearing, I hear in a completely different way. There is a sort of "discrimination," something that chooses the perception and decides what is heard and not heard, what is perceived and not perceived. In some cases, all that's heard is a continuous drone; other things are heard crystal clear, while still others are blurred, half heard.

The eyesight is no longer compelled by appearances, nor is the hearing compelled by sounds. It is a movement of consciousness that makes certain things perceptible and keeps others as a fuzzy background.

But there's nothing personal about all this. There is obviously the sense of a choice and a decision, but it isn't a personal choice and decision. In fact, the "personal" part is reduced to the necessity of causing this body to participate. For example, it's very striking with eating.

It's as if someone, a spectator, were watching over a body, which doesn't even feel very precise or defined, but more like a heterogeneous mass held together.

It's really an odd state.

At times, I feel a mere nothing could cause me to lose the connection, and only if I remain very still and very indifferent can it continue.

These experiences are always preceded by the Supreme Presence coming intimately and inwardly close, with a sort of question: "Are you ready for anything?" The Presence grows so marvelously intense that there is a thirst in the whole being for it to remain constantly like that. Nothing but That exists; nothing but That has a raison d'être. And in the midst of it comes the question: "Are you ready for anything?"

That was two nights ago. Naturally I answered, "Anything."

The body always says Yes. No choice, no preference, and no expectation: a total and complete surrender.

It is another way of living.

In terms of consciousness, it's a tremendous gain. Because all slavery, all bonds with external things have completely disappeared, fallen off. It's absolute freedom.

There is only That left. The Supreme Master is the master.

It is such a radical realization, an absolute of freedom regarded as impossible while living the ordinary life on earth.

It is equivalent to the experience of absolute freedom attained on the highest levels of the being, when one becomes completely independent of the body. Here, the remarkable point is that it's the consciousness of the body that has these experiences — a body that's still visibly of this earth!

Of course, nothing is left of what gives human beings the usual "trust in life." There doesn't seem to be any support left from the external world.

There is only . . . the supreme Will.

To put it in ordinary terms, the body feels it lives only because the supreme Lord wants it to live, otherwise it couldn't live. What the Lord wants is done — that's where it begins and ends. Whatever He wants the body to do, the body can do.

It no longer depends on physical laws.

And I don't at all feel I have lost anything! On the contrary, I feel this is a much superior state than the one I had before.

For instance, the perception of people's inner reality (not what they think or appear to be) is infinitely more precise than before. If I look at someone's photograph, for example, there's no seeing "through" something; I almost exclusively see what that person is.

Naturally, if a human will tried to exert itself on this body — "Mother must do this or that," or "She must be able to do this or be able to do that" — it would be thoroughly disappointed and would conclude that "She has become useless," for this body simply wouldn't obey. Human beings constantly exert their will on one another, or they receive suggestions and manifest them as their own will, without realizing that it's all the external falsehood.

There is a sort of certitude in the body that if, for just a few seconds, it lost contact with the Supreme, it would die on the spot. It's only the Supreme that keeps it alive.

That's how it is.

Naturally, to the ignorant and stupid consciousness of human beings, this a miserable condition to be in — while to me it's the true condition! Because, instinctively, spontaneously, for them the absolute sign of perfection is the power of life, of ordinary life.

Well, it's completely gone.

The Child of Tomorrow

Oh, it was an extraordinary experience!

Suddenly, I found myself outside the whole human creation, outside everything mankind has created in all the worlds, even in the most ethereal worlds. I saw the play of all the man-made conceptions of God and approaches to God, as well as all the invisible worlds and the gods. They came one after another, as if on a screen, each with its artificiality, its inadequacy to express the Truth.

The very precision and accuracy of it all brought about a sense of anguish, because it conveyed the impression of a world of total imagination, of imaginative creation, in which nothing is real, and one can never grasp the Thing. And this grew into a terrible anguish: "But then, what? What's truly true beside all our conceptions?"

And that's when the total, complete self-abolition came, the abolition of that which can know, of that which tries to know. Even "surrender" is too mild a word for that. And it ended in a slight little movement, as a child would have who knows nothing, tries nothing, understands nothing — but who abandons himself. A little movement of such simplicity, such ingenuousness, such extraordinary sweetness.

Just that.

And instantaneously came the Certitude, the lived Certitude.

I wasn't able to keep it very long. But "It" is wonderful.

The anguish had reached its peak: the sense of the futility of all human efforts to embrace and understand what is beyond human. Yet this was humanity in its supreme realizations, when man feels like a god. That was still below.

The experience lasted, oh, perhaps a few minutes, but it was something.

There remains obstinately the certitude that this creation is not a transitory way to recapture the true Consciousness. It is something that has its own reality and that will have its own existence in the truth.

That is the next step.

When will that come? I don't know.

But when it comes, everything will change.

On the Edge

There is a whole work of adjustment going on, and it's becoming very, very difficult.

I am practically unable to eat. I force myself; otherwise all I would do is drink. And it has nothing to do with digestion.

I don't feel tired, but for a long time and increasingly these last few days, I've had the impression of walking on the edge, and the slightest misstep would cast me into the abyss.

I feel as if on the edge between two chasms.

It is something happening in the body's cells. There's nothing moral or even sensory about all this.

I have to be constantly on my guard, for the least slackening could spell catastrophe.

The consolation is that the action of the Supreme is growing increasingly clear and evident. I am like a speck of dust in the hollow of His hand — but a speck that is in pain, that's the trouble. Everything is very sensitive.

But the play of forces is becoming clearer and more powerful, and over an increasingly vast field. And it is acting directly here in matter, with extraordinary precision and force.

It's a consolation.

Joy in the Cells

Oh, I've had an experience, a new experience!

I mean, it's the cells of the body that have had a new experience.

When I lie down on my bed at night, all the cells offer themselves up in a movement of surrender as total as possible, with an aspiration not only for union, but for fusion, so nothing exists but the Divine. I do this regularly, every single day.

But for some time the collective consciousness of the cells had been complaining: "We don't feel much of anything." Of course, they "feel" protected, supported, but they are a bit like children. They were complaining that it wasn't spectacular enough: "It has to be marvelous." Ah, very well, then!

Two nights ago, they were in that state when I went to bed. At two in the morning, I got up and suddenly noticed that all the cells, or rather the cellular consciousness, felt bathed in and at the same time impregnated with a material power of a fantastic velocity, compared to which the velocity of light is slow and unhurried.

Fantastic, absolutely fantastic!

Something that must be like the movement of the centers out there in galactic space. It was so formidable!

I remained very peaceful, immobile, sitting as quietly as I could under the circumstances of this breathtaking movement, bordering on discomfort. It was so formidable, the cells felt suffocated. And at the same time a sensation of power that nothing, absolutely nothing can resist.

I realized I had been pulled out of bed so the body-consciousness could teach the cells how to surrender: "The only way is total surrender, and then the sensation of suffocation will stop." There was a little concentration, like a lesson: how it should be done, how to abandon oneself entirely.

When I saw it had been understood, I went back to bed.

From that moment (it was about two twenty) until a quarter to five, I was within that movement without a single break!

The astonishing thing is that when I got up, the whole cellular consciousness was pervaded with a sense of Ananda in everything the body did: getting up, walking, washing my eyes, brushing my teeth. For the first time in my life I felt the Ananda (quite an impersonal Ananda) of those movements.

And the feeling was: "This is how the Lord enjoys Himself!"

Now the experience is a bit in the background. It remained in the forefront for an hour or two to make me understand.

Before that experience, the body used to feel that its entire existence was based on the surrender to the supreme Will and on endurance. If it was asked, "Do you find life pleasant?" it wouldn't dare say no, but it didn't find it very pleasant. Life wasn't meant for pleasure and it couldn't understand how it could give pleasure. There was a concentration of will toward a surrender striving to be as perfect - painstakingly perfect — as possible, and a sense of endurance: holding on no matter what.

That was the basis of its existence.

As for the transitional periods of switching from one habit to another, from one type of support to another, from one impulsion to another (for example, what I call the "change of government"), they are always difficult, occurring periodically, once the body has gathered enough strength to endure the change.

During these periods, there was that will and that endurance, as well as: "Let Your Will be done," and "Let me serve You as You want me to. Let me belong to You as You want me to," and also, "Let there remain nothing but You; let the sense of the person disappear" (it had already disappeared to a considerable degree).

Whereupon came this sudden revelation: instead of a base of endurance, of holding on at all cost, there is a joy — a very peaceful and very smiling and very sweet joy! Something so innocent, so pure, and so lovely! The joy that is at the core of all things and in everything we do.

This is what I was shown last night: in absolutely everything, there isn't one vibration that isn't a vibration of joy.

It's the first time it happens.

As a result, the body feels a little better! There is less tension. But it has been advised to remain very quiet and peaceful, above all without any excitement and "joy," as one usually knows it.

This is something so pure, oh! So translucent, so transparent, so light!

It's the first time these cells have had this experience.

Before, they always felt the Lord's support in terms of power and force. They felt they existed because of Him, through Him, in Him. But in order to feel it, they had to have endurance, the power to endure everything. Whereas now there is something smiling, smiling so, so sweetly; something extraordinarily amused behind it all, and so extraordinarily light.

And all the tension has gone.

The Cells' Perfect Sincerity

This Supreme Consciousness seems to keep putting one in touch with things from the past that were, or seemed to be, completely erased, with which one no longer had any contact — all sorts of little circumstances or imprints that make all human life such a pathetic, miserable, and sordid whole.

Then there's the luminous joy of offering up all that in order to transform and transfigure it.

Now it has become the very movement of the cellular consciousness.

Sometimes, all the weaknesses, all the reactions to adverse suggestions (tiny little things in the cells) come in waves, and the body feels on the verge of buckling under the onslaught. Then comes this warm and deep and sweet and powerful light, which restores order everywhere and opens the door to transformation.

These are very difficult moments for the body's life.

It feels as if the supreme Will alone could decide. There is no other support left. From the support of habit to the support of knowledge and willpower, all supports have disappeared.

There is only the Supreme.

And this aspiration in the cellular consciousness to the perfect sincerity of the consecration.

It is a lived experience — intensely lived — that only that absolute sincerity of the consecration enables existence.

The slightest pretense is an alliance with the forces of dissolution and death.

This immense habit of depending on the will of others, the consciousness of others, the reactions of others — the sort of universal play-acting everyone does for everyone else — must be replaced by a spontaneous, absolute sincerity of consecration.

There's like a chant in the cells: "Your Will, Lord, Your Will . . ." — but they mustn't even have the insincerity of watching themselves.

In fact, what is very striking about this cellular consciousness is that the cells have a much keener, much more exacting sense of sincerity than the vital or the mind. There is a sort of absoluteness in their sincerity that is quite remarkable, and they even display a severity toward one another that is really amazing. If anything, any part or any movement tries to cheat, they catch it immediately, with trenchant and precision. In all vital or mental movements, there is always room for suppleness and adjustment, while here it's inflexible. Thus any invocation, prayer, self-giving, surrender become so pure, so crystalline!

Indeed, there is a growing conviction that a perfection realized in this very matter is a far more perfect perfection than anywhere else. It has a sense of solidity that doesn't exist elsewhere.

When the great offering takes place within, with the joyous self-giving and surrender, if something betrays even the slightest self-interest (for instance, a pain or disorder in some little corner hoping or wishing for relief), it gets caught immediately and told, "No, you're not sincere! Give yourself without condition."

From time to time, some cells scold other cells! They reprimand them for wanting to continue in the old groove where all the functions are performed according to the methods of Nature. It's wordless, but something translates into words: "Fool! What are you afraid of? Don't you see it's the Lord doing this to transform you?"

It is quite clear that such perfect sincerity is possible only in the most material part of the consciousness.

Then there's this joy, this enthusiasm at the possibility that being entirely sincere should be possible at all, that it should be allowed, as it were. "Life is such a confusion and a muddle of insincerity, but That is really what is expected of us, That is what is allowed, That is what must be realized: To be absolute in the joy of self-giving."

It's a marvel!

As for the contact with all the beings of the Overmental plane, the gods, the entities, the divinities — in the cells lies a sort of rectitude and honesty that say, "Oh, what a fuss they all make! How it all seems so puffed-up, so pretentious!" It's quite interesting.

The vision of the world is very different. It's far more honest, sincere, and straightforward.

The consciousness manifesting in transformed cells is a marvel. It vindicates all these ages of misery. To achieve that was really worth the trouble.

To Be with That, or Not To Be

These last days, an avalanche of petty, sordid, ugly, helpless things besieged the consciousness.

This poor body cried over its inability to express anything superior.

Then came the answer in a very simple and clear way: the only solution, the only way out of the difficulty is to become divine Love.

And the experience itself came along, for a few moments (more than half an hour).

Then one truly understands that all this suffering and misery, all these ordeals one has to endure are nothing in the light of the experience of what will be (and is).

But we are still incapable; that is, the cells haven't yet the strength to bear it. They are beginning to have the capability to be, but not the strength to hold That.

For That has such an extraordinary power of transformation! All the stories of miracles down the ages, all our human notions of miracle or marvelous mutations are a child's prattle in comparison. All our attempts, all our hopes and aspirations are simply . . . childishness.

But it was clear that things weren't yet ready.

Yet it was so extraordinary that the cells felt they couldn't live on without That.

The feeling was: either That or else dissolution.

And when That went away, it didn't go away by accident, but deliberately, with the distinct sense: "This is no time for recreation; now is the time to prepare oneself so That can stay." It was categorical. After That had left, there was a kind of suffocation, and that's when the Command came, with the rigidity of a wall: "No time for recreation; time to prepare oneself."

Then one returns to reason, and it all seems so . . . ugh!

But since It was here for a while, there is the certitude — based on experience — that all the splendors one experiences by ascending, going up above, withdrawing, are nothing. They just don't have that concrete reality.

But to the body-consciousness time seems long.

Oddly enough, the body doesn't retain the joy of the memory of the experience, contrary to what happens when having experiences up above. The body could say, "It's no use for me to remember. I want the experience itself."

Wherever the mind is concerned, there is always a pleasant memory. But here it doesn't work like that. On the contrary, it intensifies the aspiration and the need to be. Life appears even more stupid and, oh, so artificial and meaningless: "What's all this absurdity we live in day in and day out?"

Yet, when That was present here, everything was identical, but it was something else entirely.

It made me understand something very personal. When Sri Aurobindo left, I knew I had to cut off the link with my psychic being, otherwise I would have left with him. As I had promised him I would stay on and do the work, I literally closed the door on the psychic. And it remained like that for ten years. After ten years, it slowly began to open again — it was frightening, but I was ready.

Similarly, after the experience of identification with divine Love a few days ago, the cells received the same kind of command and went through the same phenomenon to what happened after Sri Aurobindo's departure.

It made me understand why this whole material world is closed: It's to enable it to exist without the experience of divine Love.

Of course, I had understood why I was made to close off my psychic being — because it was simply impossible for me to continue existing outwardly without Sri Aurobindo's presence.

Well, the cells have understood they must continue existing and living their life without the presence of divine Love.

That's what happened in the world: it was a necessity for the formation and development of the material world.

Though maybe . . . we are nearing the time when it will be allowed to open again.

In fact, when speaking of the manifestation of divine Love, Sri Aurobindo said, "Truth will have to be established first, otherwise there will be catastrophes." I understand what he meant.

But it's a long time in coming!

Up above, nothing is long. But it's here that we are ordered to exist and to realize.

It's on this same occasion that I had an insight regarding death. I was told, "They all want to die because they don't have the courage to be before That is manifested!"

And I clearly saw it was true.

The "power of death" is that they all want to die! It's not in their active thoughts, but in the body's deep sentiment — because it doesn't have the courage to be without That.

It takes great courage.

One must be truly heroic. I see these cells are heroic, truly heroic. Of course they don't "know" in a mental way; it's their adoration that saves them: "What You will, Lord, what You will, what You will." With the simplicity of a child's ingenuous heart: "What You will, what You will, what You will . . . only what You will and nothing but what You will exists."

Then everything is fine.

But without that, it's impossible. It's impossible to know what they know and to continue to be if That isn't here.

Well, some bodies have to do it, don't they! Otherwise it would never get done.

Physical Suffering and Aspiration

Physical suffering reminds me of a child being beaten, for here in matter there is no ill will since Falsehood became ignorance. In matter, everything is inertia and ignorance: Total ignorance of the Truth, ignorance of the Origin, ignorance of the Possibility, even ignorance of what needs to be done to prevent physical suffering.

That ignorance is everywhere in the cells, and only the experience — which is translated by suffering in this rudimentary consciousness — can awaken and arouse the need to know and be cured, and the aspiration to change.

It has become a certitude since the aspiration has been kindled in all these cells and is growing more intense. I have noticed that the intensity of aspiration, of the call, grows tenfold when something goes wrong in the body, when instead of being smooth, spontaneous, and natural the functioning of the body becomes a painful effort and a struggle.

The difficulty is to keep up this state of intensity.

Generally, it falls back into a sort of slackening: taking things easy. It's only when the inner disorder becomes difficult to bear that the intensity grows and becomes constant. Then for hours, the call, the aspiration, the will to unite with the Divine, to become the Divine, is kept up at its peak.

Barring any suffering, there is now and then an upsurge, which then flags and falls back. So if we want things to go fast, relative to the rhythm of our lives, the whiplash is necessary, otherwise it would take an eternity!

When the action of transformation causes pain in some part of the body, provided the necessary aspiration and receptivity are present in that part, the remedy is administered at the same time and the result is complete: Along with the action necessary to obtain the transformation comes the cure of the false sensation caused by the resistance.

Then the pain is replaced with . . . something unknown on this earth, which has to do with joy, comfort, trust, and security. It's a supersensation, in perfect peace, and clearly the only thing that can be eternal.

And the Physical Substance

I am absolutely convinced (because I've had experiences that prove it) that the life of this body — what makes it move and progress — can be replaced by a force. That is, a sort of immortality can develop and the body's wear and tear can disappear. These two things are possible: the power of life can develop and the wear and tear can disappear.

This can evolve psychologically, through total obedience to the divine Impulsion, so that at every moment the necessary force is there and the necessary action is performed.

All these things are certainties; they're not a hope or imagination.

Naturally, the body needs to be educated and to progressively change its habits.

All that can be done.

For instance, if I ask these cells, with all the consciousness and experience they now have, "Is there anything you cannot do?" In their sincerity they will answer, "No. What the Lord wills, we can do." That's their state of consciousness.

But the appearance is otherwise.

My personal experience is that all I do with the Lord's Presence, I do effortlessly, without difficulty, without fatigue, without wear and tear, with a sense of a great harmonious rhythm and extraordinary plasticity. But it remains open to the whole influence from outside, and the body is still forced to do certain things that aren't directly the expression of the supreme Impulsion, hence the fatigue, the friction.

Sri Aurobindo said, "There will first come the power to prolong life at will." That's the state of consciousness being established. It is constant and settled relationship and contact with the supreme Lord, which abolishes the sense of wear and tear, replacing it with a sort of extraordinary plasticity.

But the spontaneous state of immortality isn't possible — at least not yet.

We aren't yet built with a substance that escapes the necessity of dissolution. How much time will it take to do away with the necessity of the skeleton, for example? Bones are very durable; they can last a thousand years if the conditions are favorable, but their very existence precludes immortality in principle.

The structure of the body must change into something else, and judging from the way things are going, it will take a long time. It may progress much faster than in the past, but even assuming that the movement accelerates, it will still take time.

I can envision a progressive change in which this substance would be made into something capable of renewing itself eternally from the inside out, as it were.

That would be immortality.

But it seems to me that between the present reality, what we are now, and that other mode of life, several intermediary stages will be necessary.

The remarkable thing is that in order to be in the state of consciousness in which wear and tear no longer exists, one's sense of time must change as well: One enters a state in which time no longer has the same reality.

Let the Lord Alone Exist

The only argument as far as this body is concerned is: "You clearly see it goes on deteriorating, so what are you hoping for? It will go on deteriorating until it stops."

Yet, if one looks at the body without prejudice, with objectivity, it's only an appearance of deterioration; it's not true. On the contrary, there are some areas in the body that are much stronger than they used to be.

The most important point is what might be called the "unreality of deterioration." In other words, everything that is inharmonious or disorganized increasingly gives the feeling of an illusion, which a specific inner movement of consciousness would be enough to cancel.

That particular problem is still under study. There are extremely detailed experiences involving different attitudes of consciousness with a view to find out which is the most effective.

It's a whole field of study.

It's microscopic, but extremely interesting. And the answer is always the same, and so lovely: "When you forget that you are, when the Lord alone exists, all the difficulties instantly disappear." The previous second, the difficulty was there; the next second, it's gone. But it's not something that can be done artificially. No mental or personal will can help to take this attitude; it must be spontaneous. When it's spontaneous, all difficulties instantly disappear.

Stop existing — let the Lord alone exists.

It's the only remedy.

But how to do it? Surrender, self-giving, acceptance are all being done more and more often, more and more thoroughly.

But it isn't enough.

That's the point. Even the attempt of the consciousness to focus on the Lord's existence and to try to forget its own existence isn't enough. It has an effect, but only a mixed one.

Only when one can stop existing — the Lord alone exists — is there instant glory. That's marvelous!

But it is difficult.

Inwardly, it's easy, but outwardly . . . Especially in the brain substance, when that movement of descent happens and the Lord takes possession, outwardly one feels on the verge of fainting. That's why it's better to lie down. Everything disappears instantly — the sense of time, of difficulty — and there only remains a luminous, peaceful, and powerful immensity!

It's not even "surrender," because in the word surrender there is still "something" surrendering, nor is it annihilation because nothing is "annihilated."

I can't explain — only the Lord exists, nothing else.

When will matter be ready for "that"? That is the question.

There is such a very old habit of behaving otherwise.

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