Integral Yoga


Mother says that She does not represent a teaching but is a creative force in action come on earth to expedite evolution. A teaching is an idea. One can accept a teaching and act on it. His willed action gives his own force to the idea. Non-violence, truth-speaking are such ideas that carry not a force of action but a force of idea. The idea becomes a force when the will of man lends its force to it. Electricity is not an idea, it is not a teaching or an argument. It is a force, a material force that can be used in several ways. Unless we use electricity, it does not come into action. All other theoretical explanations, however brilliant they are, are beside the point for electricity. Mother is a spiritual force. She is a spiritual force in mind, life and body. She emerges in full vigour and finds a play only when we let her work on the parts of our being. When so permitted Mother removes the shade of ego and desire from the soul, narrowness from mind and spirit, and darkness and tamas from the body. Man can achieve in a few days with Mother’s force what will otherwise take years or maybe centuries.

Lenin said electricity when combined with the soviet made communism. Scientific discovery of any description takes the society centuries ahead. The spiritual discovery of Mother can abridge millenniums into days and months. For instance, Mother says the sadhak can consider himself lucky if full yogic efforts bring out the psychic being in 30 years. She adds that in the atmosphere of the Ashram, if one lets her force work in him, the same can be achieved in a few months. Sri Aurobindo says this is the Hour of God when the Divine intends to take great evolutionary strides in a few short steps. He also adds that his yogic help can best be received only through Mother. It is the mission of Mother to distribute His grace to the sadhaks, devotees and the world-at-large.

Mother and Sri Aurobindo used the supramental force to deliver a mortal blow to death. The supramental is unique in more than one way. In mind if we have an idea and want to put it into action, we use the will to accomplish it. The idea expresses knowledge and the will implements it. Mind is so constituted that the knowledge and will can exist apart in it. One may have the knowledge without having the will. Another may have the will power without the knowledge of what to do. In a third, both may coexist without action. If we want to build a house, it is clear that the idea will not achieve it unless one decides to build it and swings into action. That is what we mean when we say knowledge and will exist separately in the mind. In the Supermind they are fused together. Knowledge there contains the will and will includes knowledge. To extend the analogy of the house, if one with Supramental Consciousness thinks a house can be built, the house is there instantaneously. In Her vision of the supermind, She explains how the supramental beings act just by thought. One of those beings wanted to have a garment and Mother says it was there on him at once.

Trikaladrishti, the knowledge of the past, present and future, will be a natural, permanent endowment of the Supramental Consciousness.

When we want to know about a person or a thing, we collect information, put it together, think and arrive at an opinion. That is the way of the mind, observation, sensing, thinking and inference. Supramental Consciousness has direct, total and integral knowledge of the persons or things it wants to know. When one endowed with Supramental Consciousness wants to know of another person before him, he turns his attention to that person and feels a total identification with him. The Supramental man feels the other man’s thoughts enter his own mind, his feelings enter into his nerves, making knowledge total and complete.

Spiritual attainments of any description can be imitated by adepts but, Mother says, the supramental attainments cannot be imitated. They do not lend themselves to be faked.

As Mother’s yoga advanced, Her sense organs began to change character. Instead of the physical ear hearing, the subtle ear started forming and slowly replaced the physical one. Her subtle sight came more and more to the front, pushing Her eyes to the rear. She narrates with interest how She sees with eyes closed. Her listening functions precisely when the speaker’s thoughts are well formulated and clear. She is unable to listen when there is lack of clarity in the speaker’s mind.

To take to Her Yoga, Her basic conditions were very simple. Avoidance of politics, liquor, smoking and sex were those conditions. To receive the most from Her, She demands sincerity down to the very physical. Her explanation of mental sincerity is to know one knows nothing. Vital sincerity for her is to renounce the enjoyment of success. She goes further and says if one can give up the right to happiness, one gets the right to Ananda. Material sincerity is to give all one’s material possessions to the Divine Work.

Mother often draws a poignant distinction between our life and the future life She has in store for us. One such dictum of Hers is: Explanations are mental, Power is Supramental. Her understanding of human nature crosses all known boundaries. She says that man now lies as never before and explains it is due to the fact that dying falsehood rises in vigour.

Until the age of 80, Mother did not sleep for more than one hour in the night. After 80, She changed Her sleeping habit. At night, She says, Her consciousness is as full as in the day. At various times energy of enormous intensities passed through Her. Once a sadhak received an ‘electric shock’ on approaching Her. She said an Italian discovered that the human body has such intensity of electric charge as to give a shock at a distance of 18 feet. Not only Her consciousness but even Her material substance of the body had acquired the power to spread out all over the universe.

Mother started hearing comments that She ‘looked’ tall at night and confirmed it was true.

Mother is a pre-eminent iconoclast. She says there is no destiny that cannot be changed.

In January 1969, the Superman appeared before Her. She saw no shadow of the figure. She says with the disappearance of the ego, shadow disappears too.

The passage to Supermind is marked by the heart stopping. This was an experience of Sri Aurobindo according to Mother.

Her list of mantras that She had been chanting runs to over 100. One of them She used often. OM NAMO BHAGAVATE is that mantra. The experience of Mother was that the greatest of inner disturbances is calmed by the chanting of this mantra.

She explained this yoga from every point of view. One important explanation: Absence of personal reaction is the basis of Purna Yoga.

Kundalini is the stored-up nervous energy in the muladhara chakra, situated at the tail end of the spine. When yogis succeed in their tapasya, they awaken this energy. It rises trumpeting like a serpent through the chakras in the heart centre and those in the head to join the thousand-petalled Lotus chakra above the head when the Yogi attains samadhi. In our yogic tradition awakening of Kundalini is a major landmark and soon leads to Mukti and Samadhi. So, it was understood that a Yogi whose Kundalini was awakened could not live for long. In Sri Aurobindo’s Purna Yoga, the whole process is in reverse. The Yogi does not awaken Kundalini. He surrenders his ego and intensifies his aspiration. The Psychic being buried behind the heart comes forward and slowly opens the Sahasradala centre, the thousand-petalled Lotus centre above the head. The higher spiritual energy starts pouring in, opening each chakra in succession from above downwards, ultimately opening the Kundalini chakra. This happened to Mother and Sri Aurobindo, and both of them, contrary to the traditional belief, lived for over 50 years after the awakening of kundalini.

Her Peace is as tangible as any earthly force, perhaps, more powerful than that. She used to say that if anyone invoked Her Peace over a crowd in commotion or a quarrel, it would descend at once. It is the experience of many people that quarrels subside in minutes, noise disappears, disorder turns into order when Mother’s Peace is invoked on the situation.

Mother comes to us according to our strength, rather according to our weakness. It is not given to man to receive all that Mother is. At best he can receive what his greatest strength permits. Receptivity to Mother, to Mother’s Force, to Mother’s Consciousness, to Mother’s Grace comes from purity, faith, devotion, sincerity, etc. It is not so easy to fulfil any of these conditions in a good measure. So, we have to look at what we are, instead of considering what Mother’s conditions are. As we are today we have accepted several things. We have accepted our own innate ability, better still, our own inner goodness, etc. To receive Mother most, the immediate practical step is to accept Mother at the level of our greatest reliance. Let us accept Mother instead of social opinion, if society is the highest standard we have accepted. Should a person disregard society also and be guided by his own conscience, let him accept Mother instead of his conscience. That way one can receive the most from Mother.

To practice self-restraint is the basis of all yogas and any discipline. Should a man agree to practice self-restraint as directed by Mother, it will be a great discipline. She says one should not seek comfort, and one should not seek to do the work he likes. Instead he should evince enthusiasm in the work assigned to him. This is no ordinary effort. It means if one wishes to sit and gossip but is asked to sit and type, he can bring himself to do it as part of duty and obedience. Imagine what will be the effort required for him to enjoy his typing as he would enjoy his gossip. That is the type of self-restraint called for to follow Mother. The day consists of 24 hours and if one decides to practice such a self-restraint, 24 hours are enough to make great progress.

Mother explains purity as exclusive reliance on the Divine. She draws a distinction between trust and surrender. One can surrender to another knowing that the other would ruin him but still can bring himself to accept it. Trust is different. One who has Trust (in the Divine) knows that whatever the Divine does to him, ultimately it will be for his own good. Surrender can have a dimension of self-immolation, whereas Trust is always self-fulfilling and elevating.

Another way of making progress in accepting Mother is to raise oneself. Each man is at one level of existence and functioning. Suppose he tries to raise himself one step higher than where he is, he requires prolonged persistent efforts. When he succeeds, the success may be for a short duration in the day. We must accept the small success and try to extend it throughout the day. This is a powerful way of growing more and more into Mother’s Consciousness, since after completing one level, there is always a next higher level open to him, making his progress endless. Such an effort can be made to speak in a low voice, to keep Mother’s Presence, to practice any of Mother’s disciplines.

One other way is to fully exhaust one’s physical, nervous and mental energies in the work we do. A foreigner working in a project took to this and in six or seven days he was exhausted beyond measure. At that moment near a machine he ‘saw’ Sri Aurobindo standing in resplendent form, a vision rarely granted to seekers.