To People in India, 1914 1926
To N. K. Gogte
I regret that I have not been able to reply as yet to your postcard. I am entirely occupied with the work for the Review
which has to be given to the Press shortly. After the 17th I shall ..
be more free and hope then to be able to reply to the questions you have put to us.
9 Sept. 1914
21 Sept 1914
I hope you received duly my card explaining the delay in my answer.
Your questions cover the whole of a very wide field. It is therefore necessary to reply to them with some brevity, touching
only on some principal points.
1. What meditation exactly means.
There are two words used in English to express the Indian idea of Dhyana, "meditation" and "contemplation". Meditation means properly the concentration of the mind on a single train of ideas which work out a single subject. Contemplation
means regarding mentally a single object, image, idea so that the knowledge about the object, image or idea may arise naturally
in the mind by force of the concentration. Both these things are forms of dhyana; for the principle of
dhyana is mental
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concentration whether in thought, vision or knowledge.
There are other forms of
dhyana. There is a passage in which
Vivekananda advises you to stand back from your thoughts, let them occur in your mind as they will and simply observe
them & see what they are. This may be called concentration in self-observation.
This form leads to another, the emptying of all thought out of the mind so as to leave it a sort of pure vigilant blank on which
the divine knowledge may come and imprint itself, undisturbed by the inferior thoughts of the ordinary human mind and with
the clearness of a writing in white chalk on a blackboard. You will find that the Gita speaks of this rejection of all mental
thought as one of the methods of Yoga and even the method it seems to prefer. This may be called the dhyana of liberation,
as it frees the mind from slavery to the mechanical process of thinking and allows it to think or not think as it pleases and
when it pleases, or to choose its own thoughts or else to go beyond thought to the pure perception of Truth called in our
Meditation is the easiest process for the human mind,
but the narrowest in its results; contemplation more difficult, but greater; self-observation and liberation from the chains of
Thought the most difficult of all, but the widest and greatest in its fruits. One can choose any of them according to one's
bent and capacity. The perfect method is to use them all, each in its own place and for its own object; but this would need a
fixed faith and firm patience and a great energy of Will in the self-application to the Yoga.
2. What should be the objects or ideas for meditation?
Whatever is most consonant with your nature and highest
aspirations. But if you ask me for an absolute answer, then I must say that Brahman is always the best object for meditation
or contemplation, and the idea on which the mind should fix is that of God in all, all in God and all as God. It does not
matter essentially whether it is the Impersonal or the Personal God or, subjectively, the One Self. But this is the idea I have
found the best, because it is the highest and embraces all other
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truths, whether truths of this world or of the other worlds or beyond all phenomenal existence,
— "All this is the Brahman."
In the third issue of Arya, at the end of the second instalment of the Analysis of the Isha Upanishad, you will find a description
of this vision of the [Brahman]1 which may be of help to you in understanding the idea. (October number now in the Press.)2
3. Conditions internal and external that are most essential for meditation.
There are no essential external conditions, but solitude and seclusion at the time of meditation as well as stillness of the
body are helpful, sometimes almost necessary to the beginner. But one should not be bound by external conditions. Once the
habit of meditation is formed, it should be made possible to do it in all circumstances, lying, sitting, walking, alone, in company,
in silence or in the midst of noise etc.
The first internal condition necessary is concentration of
the will against the obstacles to meditation, ie wandering of the mind, forgetfulness, sleep, physical and nervous impatience and
The second is an increasing purity and calm of the inner
consciousness (citta) out of which thought and emotion arise; ie a freedom from all disturbing reactions, such as anger, grief,
depression, anxiety about worldly happenings etc. Mental perfection and moral are always closely allied to each other.
P.S. The answer to your last question cannot be given so generally; it depends on the path chosen, the personal difficulties, etc.
Draft of a Letter to Nolini Kanta Gupta
Quorsum haec incerta? Do you really mean to perpetrate
1 MS All. See Note on the Texts, page 586. — Ed.
2 See "The Vision of the Brahman" in
Isha Upanishad, volume 17 of THE COMPLETE
WORKS OF SRI AUROBINDO, p. 30. The passage was first published in the third issue
of the Arya, dated October 1914. — Ed.
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the sexual union dignified by the name of marriage, or don't you? Will you, won't you, will you, won't you
— to quote the
language of the spider to the fly? Whither does all this tend, to fructuation
(I was going to use another word) or fluctuation, —
footballing and floating and flirting as much as exchange of eyes in the delicious brevity of
kanya dekha and the subsequent vast
freedom of imagination will give you of that modern amusement. But all this seems too Robindranathian, too
ki jani ki, to come to
a practical conclusion. To weigh in the subtle scales of amorous thought noses and chins and lips and eyes and the subtleties of
expression is no doubt a charming mathematics, but it soars too much into the region of the infinite, there is no reason why it
should work out into any sum of action. Saurin's more concrete and less poetic and philosophic mind seems to have realised this
at an early stage and he wrote asking me whether it was worth while to marry with our ideas and aims under present social
conditions. After about two months' absence of cogitation, I have returned a sort of non committal answer,
— that I don't
think it is — very, but it may turn out to be and on the whole he
had better consult his antarâtman and act or not act accordingly.
To A. B. Purani
Feb 21. 1920
It is not easy to get a letter out of me, I hardly write more than a dozen in the year, so you must not be surprised at my
long delay in answering you. On the two matters you mentioned in your first letter
word did you want? There is no need
of a word, when there is personal contact; the spirit is always greater than the word. And if there was anything that needed
to be said, I believe it was spoken between us. I do not know if there is anything definite of which you feel the necessity. If there
is, the best way is to try and get it from within first, and only if there is still doubt, would there be the need to come for it to
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a definite word from me. It would be well, however, to let me know from time to time how you are proceeding with your Yoga
and especially of any obstacles or difficulties you experience; for, even if I do not answer, I can always then give the silent help
which I have usually found to be the most effective. As regards malady or illness, it is true that the chief reliance should be
on the inner will and secondly on simple remedies. But this rule should not at first be rigorously applied in affections of a strongly
physical character, because the gross body is the most obstinately recalcitrant to the will; there it is better in the earlier stages to
respect to a certain extent the habits of the bodily consciousness which being physical relies upon physical remedies. When you
find that the will is strong enough to deal rapidly with even these affections, then you can dispense with remedies.
You have written to Amrita about a translation of the "Secret of the Veda" and "To the Nations." The latter book is not
my property, it is M. Richard's and it is possible that he has given the rights of translation to the publisher who, if he knew,
might take objection to your publishing a translation without his permission. M. Richard himself would no doubt give the
permission at my request, but I do not know whether he has kept the right in his own hands. Please therefore do not publish that at
present, but let me know the name of the translator. M. Richard is expected here at any time during the next month or two; but
even if he does not come, I can ask the publisher for permission on behalf of the translator. The "Secret of the Veda" is not complete and there are besides many imperfections and some errors in it which I would have preferred to amend before the book or
any translation of it was published. Perhaps, however, it does not matter so much in a Gujerati translation which will not come
under close criticism such as would meet a book on the subject in English. It would be better, however, whenever there is question
of a translation of a book — as opposed to an article or chapter here and there
— to let me know first so that I may see whether
there is any modification needed or indispensable change.
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To V. Chandrasekharam
13th July 1920
I have not been able to write to you before for want of time
— a thing of which I have always a very short supply nowadays. I hope that your illness has "improved"
— in the right way —
by this time; if not, please write and keep us informed of your state of health. Above all, do not harbour that idea of an unfit
body — all suggestions of that kind are a subtle attack on the will to siddhi and especially dangerous in physical matters. It
has been cropping up in several people who are doing the Yoga and the first business is to expel it bag and baggage. Appearances and facts may be all in its favour, but the first condition of success for the Yogin and indeed for anybody who wants
to do anything great or unusual is to be superior to facts and disbelieve in appearances. Will to be free from disease, however
formidable, many-faced or constant its attacks, and repel all contrary suggestions.
It is now precisely in this physical field that I am getting most obstruction nowadays. I have myself been sporting a choice
kind of cough for the last month or so which took up its lodgings in my throat and cheerfully promised to be my companion
for the longest possible period it could manage of my physical existence; and though ill received and constantly discouraged, it
is still hanging about the premises. In other matters I progress with and in spite of the customary obstructions, much faster
than at any previous period of my Yoga. Nothing absolutely new — I am simply going on developing to a higher degree
the vijnana and turning other things into something of its substance.
It is bad that you do not find things favourable for your own Yoga. In case you find it too difficult there, why not try another
period here? This time there would be no inconveniences. Our
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friends the R-s had intended to ask you to stay with them; they were only waiting to get things into order and were sorry you
went away suddenly before they could put it to you. Another time the arrangement could be made, and I think there would
be no objection on your side. I think you said something to someone about being here for the 15th August. Was that only an
idea, an intention or a resolution?
Please write sometimes about your health and your Yoga.
13 April 1921
I am glad to get your letter after so long a time. I have myself written no letters for the last six months to anyone, both on account of lack of time and absorption in Yoga, which explains my silence. I will do my best to help you; but until you come, write
to me, for even if I do not answer, that creates a physical link which makes transmission of help easier on the material plane
— for the physical consciousness. It will certainly be better for you if you come to Pondicherry, but I recognise the difficulties.
We are trying, not yet with success, to arrange for a house here where people who come for the Yoga may stop. Perhaps it would
be best for you to wait a little and see whether this materialises. It would hardly do in your present state of health for you to
expose yourself to the difficulties of bad food of the Tamil hotel type etc. Amrita will write and inform you as soon as we can
get the thing settled.
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[21 July 1924]
It is not easy to get into the silence.3 That is only possible by throwing out the mental and vital activities. It is easier to let the
silence get into you, i.e., to open yourself and let it descend. The way to do this and the way to call down the higher powers is the
same. It is to remain quiet at the time of meditation, not fighting with the mind or making mental efforts to pull down the power
of the Silence but keeping only a silent will and aspiration for them. If the mind is active, one has only to learn to look at it,
drawn back and not giving any sanction from within, until its habitual or mechanical activities begin to fall quiet for want of
support from within. If it is too persistent, a steady rejection without strain or struggle is the one thing to be done.
The mental attitude you are taking with regard to "the Lord is the Yogeswara" can be made a first step towards this
Silence does not mean absence of experiences. It is an inner
silence and quietude in which all experiences happen without producing any disturbance. It would be a great mistake to interfere with the images rising in you. It does not matter whether they are mental or psychic. One must have experience not only
of the true psychic but of the inner mental, inner vital and subtle physical worlds or planes of consciousness. The occurrence
of the images is a sign that these are opening and to inhibit them would mean to inhibit the expansion of consciousness and
experience without which this Yoga cannot be done.
All this is an answer to the points raised by your letter.
It is not meant that you should change suddenly what you are doing. It is better to proceed from what you have attained which
seems to be solid, if small, and proceed quietly in the direction indicated.
3 This letter and the next were written by K. Amrita at Sri Aurobindo's dictation or
following his oral instructions. — Ed.
[4 October 1924]
He asks me to tell you that there are two kinds of movements in
the Sadhana, the ascent and the descent. The ascent or the upward movement takes place when there is a sufficient aspiration
from the being, i.e. from the various mental, vital and physical planes. Each in turn ascends above the mind to the place where
it meets the supramental and can then receive the origination of all its movements from above.
The Higher descends when you have a receptive quietude in the various planes of your being prepared to receive it. In
either case whether in aspiring upward to rise to the Higher or in remaining passive and open to receive the Higher, an entire calmness in the different parts of the being is the true condition. If you do not have the necessary force in the quiet aspiration or will and
if you find that a certain amount of effort will help you in rising upward, you may go on using it as a temporary means until there
is the natural openness in which a silent call or simple effortless will is sufficient to induce the action of the Higher Shakti.
Extract from a Letter to K. N. Dixit
Finally, I must inform you that AG is not inclined to give permission at the present time.4 He does not want any, even the least disturbance of his concentration on his own sadhana as he is
passing through a most difficult period when any diversion of his energies or impact from the outside world may have undesirable
consequences. For yourself also it is not a favourable time and by coming here you are likely, even if you get some help, to
have also more and perhaps very acute difficulties. AG asks me to tell you that you would do best to return home, write to
him whatever obstacles in sadhana you may have and await a more favourable time for renewing your request about coming
to Pondicherry. 30 March 1924
4 This paragraph was written by Sri Aurobindo in his own hand at the end of a letter
written by A. B. Purani on his behalf. — Ed.
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[30 September 1925]
I am answering your second letter which reached me today.
And first I must say something about the very extraordinary line of conduct you propose to adopt in case of not hearing from me.
I think it is because, as you say, your mind is not in a completely right condition that you have proposed it. No one with any
common sense and certainly no one with a clear moral sense would support you in your intention. As to the law, it is not usual
in France to take up things of this kind but only public offences against morals. The court would probably take no notice of your
self-accusation and in any case it would not proceed in the absence of evidence from others which would here be lacking. But
supposing it were otherwise, what would your action amount to? First, it would be putting an almost insuperable obstacle in
the way of your own mental and moral recovery and of your leading a useful life in future. Secondly, it would be bringing
an unmerited disgrace upon your father and family. Thirdly, it would mean, if it took any form, the ruin of the life of someone
else, for, if I understand rightly what you say, some other or others would be involved, and your suggestion that you are entirely
responsible would be absurd in law and could have no value and all this havoc you propose to cause merely in order to satisfy a
morbid moral egoism. It would be, in fact, if it could be seriously executed, a greater immorality than anything you have yet done.
The true way to set yourself right for your act is not to do untold harm to others in the name of honesty or any other virtue but
to put yourself right inwardly and do otherwise in future.
I shall answer briefly the questions you put in your second
para. (1) The way to set yourself right is, as I have said, to set your nature right and make yourself master of your vital being
and its impulses. (2) Your position in human society is or can be that of many others who in their early life have committed excesses of various kinds and have afterwards achieved self-control
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and taken their due place in life. If you [were]5 not so ignorant of life, you would know that your case is not exceptional but on
the contrary very common and that many have done these things and afterwards become useful citizens and even leading men in
various departments of human activity. (3) It is quite possible for you to recompense your parents and fulfil the past expectations
you spoke of, if you make that your object. Only you must first recover from your illness and achieve the proper balance of your
mind and will. (4) The object of your life depends upon your own choice and the way of attainment depends upon the nature
of the object. Also your position will be whatever you make it. What you have to do is, first of all, to recover your health;
then, with a quiet mind to determine your aim in life according to your capacities and preferences. It is not for me to make up
your mind for you. I can only indicate to you what I myself think should be the proper aims and ideals.
Apart from external things there are two possible inner ideals which a man can follow. The first is the highest ideal
of ordinary human life and the other the divine ideal of Yoga. I must say in view of something you seem to have said to your
father that it is not the object of the one to be a great man or the object of the other to be a great Yogin. The ideal of human
life is to establish over the whole being the control of a clear, strong and rational mind and a right and rational will, to master
the emotional, vital and physical being, create a harmony of the whole and develop the capacities whatever they are and fulfil
them in life. In the terms of Hindu thought, it is to enthrone the rule of the purified and sattwic
buddhi, follow the dharma,
fulfilling one's own svadharma and doing the work proper to
one's capacities, and satisfy kāma and artha under the control of the
buddhi and the dharma. The object of the divine life,
on the other hand, is to realise one's highest self or to realise God and to put the whole being into harmony with the truth
of the highest self or the law of the divine nature, to find one's own divine capacities great or small and fulfil them in life as
5 MS (copy) are
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a sacrifice to the highest or as a true instrument of the divine Sakti. About the latter ideal I may write at some later time. At
present I shall only say something about the difficulty you feel in fulfilling the ordinary ideal.
This ideal involves the building of mind and character and it is always a slow and difficult process demanding patient labour
of years, sometimes the better part of the lifetime. The chief difficulty in the way with almost everybody is the difficulty
of controlling the desires and impulses of the vital being. In many cases as in yours, certain strong impulses run persistently
counter to the ideal and demand of the reason and the will. The cause is almost always a weakness of the vital being itself,
for, when there is this weakness it finds itself unable to obey the dictates of the higher mind and obliged to act instead under
the waves of impulsion that come from certain forces in nature. These forces are really external to the person but find in this part
of him a sort of mechanical readiness to satisfy and obey them. The difficulty is aggravated if the
seat of the weakness is in the
nervous system. There is then what is called by European science a neurasthenia tendency and under certain circumstances it leads
to nervous breakdowns and collapses. This happens when there is too great a strain on the nerves or when there is excessive
indulgence of the sexual or other propensities and sometimes also when there is too acute and prolonged a struggle between
the restraining mental will and these propensities. This is the illness from which you are suffering and if you consider these
facts you will see the real reason why you broke down at Pondicherry. The nervous system in you was weak; it could not
obey the will and resist the demand of the external, vital forces, and in the struggle there came an overstrain of the mind and
the nerves and a collapse taking the form of an acute attack of neurasthenia. These difficulties do not mean that you cannot
prevail and bring about a control of your nerves and vital being and build up a harmony of mind and character. Only you must
understand the thing rightly, not indulging in false and morbid ideas about it and you must use the right means. What is needed
is a quiet mind and a quiet will, patient, persistent, refusing
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to yield either to excitement or discouragement, but always insisting [tranquilly]6 on the change needed in the being. A quiet
will of this kind cannot fail in the end. Its effect is inevitable. It must first reject in the waking state, not only the acts habitual
to the vital being, but the impulses behind them which it must understand to be external to the person even though manifested
in him and also the suggestions which are behind the impulses. When thus rejected, the once habitual thoughts and movements
may still manifest in the dream-state, because it is a well-known psychological law that what is suppressed or rejected in the
waking state may still recur in sleep and dream because they are still there in the subconscient being. But if the waking state
is thoroughly cleared, these dream-movements must gradually disappear because they lose their food and the impressions in
the subconscient are gradually effaced. This is the cause of the dreams of which you are so much afraid. You should see that
they are only a subordinate symptom which need not alarm you if you can once get control of your waking condition.
But you must get rid of the ideas which have stood in the way of effecting this self-conquest.
(1) Realise that these things in you do not come from any true moral depravity, for that can exist only when the mind itself
is corrupted and supports the perverse vital impulses. Where the mind and the will reject them, the moral being is sound and it
is a case only of a weakness or malady of the vital parts or the nervous system.
(2) Do not brood on the past but turn your face with a patient hope and confidence towards the future. To brood on
the past failure will prevent you from recovering your health and will weaken your mind and will, hampering them in the
work of self-conquest and rebuilding of the character.
(3) Do not yield to discouragement if success does not come
at once, but continue patiently and steadfastly until the thing is done.
(4) Do not torture your mind by always dwelling on your
6 MS (copy) tranquility
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weakness. Do not imagine that they unfit you for life or for the fulfilment of the human ideal. Once having recognised that they
are there, seek for your sources of strength and dwell rather on them and the certainty of conquest.
Your first business is to recover your health of mind and body and that needs quietness of mind and for some time a quiet
way of living. Do not rack your mind with questions which it is not yet ready to solve. Do not brood always on the thing.
Occupy your mind as much as you can with healthy and normal occupations and give it as much rest as possible. Afterwards
when you have your right mental condition and balance, then you can with a clear judgment decide how you will shape your
life and what you have to do in the future.
I have given you the best advice I can and told you what
seems to me the most important for you at present. As for your coming to Pondicherry, it is better not to do so just now. I
could say to you nothing more than what I have written. It is best for you so long as you are ill, not to leave your father's
care, and above all, it is the safe rule in [an] illness like yours not to return to the place and surroundings where you had the
breakdown, until you are perfectly recovered and the memories and associations connected with it have faded in intensity, lost
their hold on the mind and can no longer produce upon it a violent or disturbing impression.
To and about V. Tirupati
Pondicherry. February 21st 1926.
Tirupati, my child -
Our Divine Lord sends you the following message:7
7 This letter-draft and those numbered 
, and 
below were written by the
Mother at Sri Aurobindo's dictation or following his oral instructions. Items 
, also drafts, were written by Sri Aurobindo in his own hand. Item 
was written partly in the Mother's and partly in Sri Aurobindo's hand. Items 
were recorded by A. B. Purani. — Ed.
Page – 306
Your letters have been received and read with pleasure. Haradhan came back yesterday morning bringing the two last
ones and also the news that, during the time he remained with you, you were eating and sleeping
— which we have been very
pleased to hear. It is a great first step forward; and if you go on like that, you will soon establish a solid basis for your complete
We heard also with pleasure that your family is ready to
help you without intruding or forcing themselves upon you, and that arrangements are made for you to live quietly.
In your letters you ask for detailed instructions and also Haradhan reported that you were insisting very much to receive
them. Here are, then, the instructions we have to give you:
First the outer condition.
1) Be careful to always eat well and never think that to eat well or to take pleasure in eating is in any way wrong. On the
contrary you must try to recover the ananda of food; without fearing the attachment for food; if there is such [a] thing in you,
it will fall off from you as the ananda grows.
2) You must take long, peaceful sleeps. Never believe that
there is anything wrong in sleeping well and deeply. And fear not that the time you give to sleep is wasted for your sadhana.
In a good, quiet sleep necessary things are done by the superconscience and in the sub-conscience.
3) You need good fresh air and a moderate amount of exercise in the open every day. Vizianagaram is near the hills, it is
surely a wholesome place; and a daily walk of one hour or so in the country will help you much to recover completely your
4) We have heard that there are several alternatives for your
lodging: an empty family house in front of the house where your family lives, or a villa out of town, or another two storied
house. Because of its situation, the villa seems the best, provided arrangements can be made for your material needs. If not
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possible, you might live in the empty family house and receive food prepared for you in your family's house.
5) Haradhan said also that you wished to cook for yourself. If you can take pleasure in cooking and making the necessary
material arrangements, marketing, etc. it would be a good thing. But if you do not take pleasure and interest in it, it would
be better to receive the food from your family or any of your friends.
6) You write: "it is most painful for me to have to accept this obligation from these people." This is a wrong way of looking at
the matter. This help is given to you through the family and that involves no obligation on your part and binds you to nothing.
The spiritual sadhaka is entitled to receive help from others, and that puts him to no obligation to them and leaves him perfectly
free. Those that help are merely instruments used by the Divine Power to provide the sadhaka with the needed conditions for
7) About the inner condition.
Write regularly, fully and frankly everything, whether you think it good or bad. It is important that you should conceal
nothing; and if you feel some hesitation in writing some things that appear to you as crude or non important, you must overcome this hesitation. To make everything as clear and open as possible is the essential condition for receiving a complete help
and guidance; it is also the necessary condition for the transformation of the movements that are to be changed. So, you must
write everything internal and external.
Do not forget that your absence from Pondicherry is only temporary. The sooner you get into the right condition, the
sooner you will be able to come back.
And the right condition is to have a strong body, strong
nerves, a calm mind capable of action and will; no shrinking from contact with life and with the others. These conditions are
necessary because, before your return, we shall have to ask you to make certain arrangements, and you must have full power of
will and action in order to succeed.
Write everything always, and we shall guide you and know
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how you are progressing. And when we see that you are ready, we shall tell you what to do.
P.S. We have received your letters of the 19th and the telegram ..
of the 21st. We will answer fully, but meanwhile we write a few ..
It is not sufficient to strengthen your body, you must also
strengthen your mind; you must absolutely get rid of these ideas about sin, this brooding upon suggestions of sexual impulse and
this habit of seeing dark vital forces everywhere. Your people are quite ordinary human beings, they are not evil spirits or forces,
your attitude to them must be one neither of attachment nor of fear, horror and shrinking, but of quiet detachment.
Do not seek for inspirations, but act quietly and rationally according to our instructions, with a calm mind and a quiet
will. Get rid of your obsession about coming here and falling at our feet. This and the other suggestions and voices are not
inspirations but merely things created by your own mind and its impulses. Your safety lies in remaining quiet and doing what we
tell you quietly and persistently, with a perfect confidence, until you are entirely recovered.
We have written one letter on the 16th, one yesterday [the] ..
20th and this is the third. Let us know each time you receive a ..
letter from us.
[24 February 1926]
INFORM TIRUPATI MY ANGER. PREVENT COMING TO PONDI8 CHERRY. I REFUSE TO RECEIVE HIM.8
[26 February 1926]
I received this morning your letter about Tirupati.9 I shall try to
8 Telegram to S. Duraiswami, an advocate living in Madras, to whom Tirupati had
gone on his way to Pondicherry. — Ed.
9 Draft of a letter to Dasari Narayana Swamy Chetty, Tirupati's father-in-law.
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explain to you Tirupati's condition, the reasons why I have been obliged to send him away from Pondicherry and the conditions
which are necessary for his recovery from his present abnormal state of mind.
Some time ago Tirupati began to develop ideas and methods of Yoga-sadhana which are quite inconsistent with the ideas and
methods that underlie my system of Yoga. Especially, he began practices that belong entirely to the most extreme form of Bhakti
sadhana, practices that are extremely dangerous because they lead to an excited, exalted, abnormal condition and violently
call down forces which the body cannot bear. They may lead to a break-down of the physical body, the mind and the nervous
system. As soon as I became aware of this turn, I warned him of the danger and prohibited the continuance of these practices. At
first he attempted to follow my instructions, but the attraction of his new experiences was so great that he resumed his practices in
secret and in the end openly returned to them in defiance of my repeated prohibitions. The result was that he entered into and
persisted in an abnormal condition of mind which still continues and at times rises to an alarming height dangerous to the sanity
of his mind and the health of his body.
The following are the peculiarities of this condition.
1. There is a state of mind in which he loses hold to a great extent of physical realities and lives in a world of imaginations
which do not at all belong to the terrestrial body and the physical human life.
2 He conceives a great distaste for eating and sleeping and believes that the power in him is so great that he can live without
sleep and without food.
3 He is listening all the time to things which he calls inspirations and intuitions, but which are simply the creations and delusions of his own excited and unduly exalted state of
mind. This exalted state of mind gives him so much pleasure, so much a false sense of strength and Ananda and of being above
the human condition that he is unwilling to give it up and feels unhappy and fallen when he is brought down to a more ordinary
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4 In this condition he has no longer enough discrimination
left or enough will-power to carry out my instructions or even his own resolutions, but obeys blindly and like a machine these
false inspirations and impulses. Everything contrary to them he explains away or ignores
— that is the reason why he ignores
my orders and puts no value on my telegrams or letters.
5 Also he feels in this condition an abnormal shrinking (not
any spiritual detachment) from physical life, from his family, from his friends
— for some time he withdrew even from the
society of his fellow sadhakas, — and considers anything that comes from them or turns him from his exalted condition as the
prompting of evil forces.
Please understand that all these things are the delusions of
his own abnormal and exalted state of mind and are not, as he falsely imagines and will try to persuade you, signs of a high
spiritual progress. On the contrary, if he persists in them, he will lose altogether such spiritual progress as he had made and may
even destroy by want of food and want of sleep his body.
To allow him to remain here would be quite disastrous for
him. He would count it as a victory for his own aberrations and would persist in them without any farther restraint with results
that might be fatal to him. And the intensity of the spiritual atmosphere here would prevent him from coming back to his
normal self. Besides when in this condition he brings about here a state of confusion and perturbation,
— the one thing to be
absolutely avoided in this way of Yoga, — which if prolonged would make the sadhana of my other disciples impossible and
would spoil my own spiritual work altogether.
His one chance is if he can settle down in Vizianagaram for
a considerable time and in the surroundings of his old physical life return to a normal condition. Please therefore do not send
him back or give him money to return to Pondicherry. It will be of no use and may do him great and irreparable harm. He
promised, when he went from here first, to eat well and sleep regularly, and he has now promised, on my refusing to see or
receive him on account of his disobedience of my orders, to remain quietly at Vizianagaram, to cease listening to his false
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inspirations and intuitions and to obey my written orders. I had already written to him to that effect and also to throw away
his shrinking from life and from his contact with others, but he came away without waiting for my letter. If this time he carries
out my instructions, he may yet recover. He must eat well, he must sleep regularly, he must give up his wrong sadhana and
live for some time as a normal human being, he must do some kind of physical action, he must resume normal contact with life
and others. If he returns to his erratic movements, the remedy is not to let him leave Vizianagaram, but to remind him of my
instructions and his promises and insist on his carrying them out. Only you must do it in my name and remind him always
that if he does not obey me, I have resolved not to see him again nor to receive him. This is the only thing at present that can
make him do what is requisite.
I consented to an arrangement by which he could live quietly
by himself because that was what he asked for; but the best would have been that he should live either with his family in
their house so that his needs could be looked after or with some one who would see to his needs, some one
with a strong will who
will quietly insist, always in my name, on his doing what he has promised. But I do not know if there is anyone there who could
do this for him or whom he would consent to have with him.
You should not understand by what I have written, that he
should live as a householder, resume his relations with his wife etc, or that he should not be left mostly to quiet and solitude, if
that is what he likes. What I mean is that he must come gradually, if not at first, to deal with those around him as a human being
with human beings, without his present nervous shrinkings and abnormal repulsions. The spiritual attitude I have told him to
´ take is one of calm freedom from attachment (ásakti), not of an
excited shrinking. It may be that after a time this will seem more possible to him than it does at present.
It will be best if you let me know fairly often what he is doing and whether he is carrying out my instructions, as it is
likely that he will not write himself to me all the truth when he is in the wrong condition.
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You must by this time have read the first three letters we wrote to you and we hope you have understood and will act
according to our instructions. But it is necessary to make some of them more precise and clear. Today I will write only on two
1 First as to your so-called inspirations and intuitions.
Understand henceforth that you must put no reliance on these suggestions which merely come to you from your mind.
They are altogether false. If they seem to come from very high, they are still false; they come from the heights of vital error and
not from the truth. If they present themselves as inspirations and intuitions or commands, they are still false; they are only
arrogant creations of the vital mind. If they claim to be from me, they are still false; they are not from me at all. If they seem
imperative, loud, grand, full of authority, they are all the more false. If they excite and elate you and drive you to act blindly
in contradiction to my written orders and instructions, they are most false; they are the suggestions of a power that wants only
its own satisfaction and not the Truth.
Henceforth do not seek at all for inspirations and intuitions
to guide your conduct. Get back into touch with physical realities, act with a plain practical mind that sees things as they are
and not as you want them to be.
You ought to see now that your inspirations were entirely
untrue. The explanations by which you try to account for their failure, are equally untrue. For instance you told Duraiswami
that because you did not start by the first train from Madras, therefore you lost your chance. This is absurd and false. By whatever train, at whatever time, whatever you might have done, I would not have seen you or received you, for you may [not] come
without my written orders [to] come and even against my orders.
2 Next, as to your coming back to Pondicherry. You are
always thinking that you have only to act for one or two days according to my orders and then I will call you back. You are
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always expecting an immediate recall. Put this out of your head altogether. You cannot come back until I am satisfied that you
have entirely got out of your present false consciousness which makes you act and think as you have been doing, and that there
is no danger of your going back to it. This will take time. You will be called back to Pondicherry if you obey my orders consistently
for a long time and satisfy my conditions, but you must no longer be always thinking of a rapid coming back; you must think only
of doing what I tell you and satisfying my conditions. Remember what those conditions are
(1) You must eat and sleep and build up again a strong body.
(2) You must come out of your present state of vital consciousness, give up its false excitement, false elations, harmful depressions, give up your false inspirations and intuitions and
come down into a plain, natural quiet physical consciousness. That is your only chance of coming back to reality and the Truth.
(3) You must get rid of your nervous shrinkings from life and others; you must be able to look at people naturally as
human beings and deal with them calmly, quietly with a sane calm practical mind. Until you have done this, you will not be
in the right condition for returning here.
3dly, about your stay there. You must not talk or think
of Vizianagaram or your surroundings as a bad or dangerous atmosphere. It is nothing of the kind. I would not have sent you
there, if it were — on the contrary, it is the best place for what you have to do now and what you will have to do hereafter
before you can return to Pondicherry.
If you cannot stay in your family house, which would be
the most convenient, you can stay in your father-in-law's villa — or the empty family house. But then it will be much better if
you allow somebody to stay with you who will look after your needs and [incomplete]
We have received your letters and noted all the points on
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which you have asked for instruction and enlightenment. We intend to answer fully, but the letter will take a day or two to
write. In the meanwhile try to carry out the instructions already given. In your relations with your people, act simply and naturally; get rid of these nervous shrinkings which are a weakness. The important thing is to have the right inner attitude, calm and
without attachment. If you do that, all these details — about how to address them, food and bathing, etc
— become trifling
matters which will arrange themselves according to convenience and common sense. It is simply that you have to stay at Vizianagaram for some time — as you have rightly seen, for several months, and during that time you must take what help they can
give you for your material needs, without that binding you in any way to them. But on this matter as on the other questions
raised in your letter we shall write fully in our next letter.
This morning we have received your letter probably of the 2nd of March (please put dates on your letters) and it is necessary
.. to reply to it at once, for it is evident from it that you are persisting in a wrong effort which prevents the very object that you have in view. You want to have what you call the "divinisation";
but you cannot have it in the way you are trying.
I will point out your mistakes; please read carefully and try
to understand rightly. Especially understand my words in their plain sense and do not put into them any "hidden meaning" or
any other meaning which might be favourable to your present ideas.
The Divine Consciousness we are trying to bring down is a Truth Consciousness. It shows us all the truth of our being
and nature on all the planes, mind, life and body. It does not throw them away or make an impatient effort to get rid of them
immediately and substitute something fantastic and wonderful in their place. It works upon them patiently and slowly to perfect
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and raise in them all that is capable of perfection and to change all that is obscure and imperfect.
Your first mistake is to imagine that it is possible to become divine in a moment. You imagine that the higher consciousness
has only to descend in you and remain there, and all is finished. You imagine that no time is needed, no long, hard or careful
work, and that all will be done for you in a moment by the Divine Grace. This is quite wrong. It is not done in that way;
and so long as you persist in this error, there can be no permanent divinisation, and you will only disturb the Truth that is trying
to come, and disturb your own mind and body by a fruitless struggle.
Secondly, you are mistaken in thinking that because you feel a certain force and Presence, therefore you are at once divine.
It is not so easy to become divine. There must be to whatever force or presence comes, a right interpretation and response, a
right knowledge in the mind, a right preparation of the vital and physical being. But what you are feeling is an abnormal vital
force and exaltation due to the impatience of your desire, and with this there come suggestions born of your desire, which you
mistake for truth and call inspirations and intuitions.
I will point out some of the mistakes you make in this
1) You immediately begin to think that there is no further
need of my instructions or guidance, because you imagine you are henceforth one with me. Not only so, but the suggestions
which you want to accept go quite against my instructions. How can this be if you are one with me? It is obvious that these
ideas that go against my instructions come from your mind and impulses, and not from me or from any Divine Consciousness or from anything that can be called the Sri Aurobindo Consciousness.
2) In this connection, you write: "I see one difficulty: that even when I am filled with you the idea of obeying and following
your instructions still works — even when you have made me yourself. I pray for the needful." The idea of following and
obeying my instructions is not a difficulty, it is the only thing
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that can help you. That obedience is the thing that is needful.
3) What do you mean by saying: "You have made me yourself"? The words seem to have no meaning. You cannot mean that you become the same individual self as I; there cannot be
two Aurobindos; even if it were possible it would be absurd and useless. You cannot mean that you have become the Supreme
Being, for you cannot be God or the Iswara. If it is in the ordinary (Vedantic) sense, then everyone is myself, since every Jiva is a
portion of the One. You may perhaps have become conscious for a time of this unity; but that consciousness is not sufficient
by itself to transform you or to make you divine.
4) You begin to imagine that you can do without food and
sleep and disregard the needs of the body; and you forget my instructions, and mistakenly call these needs a disturbance or the
play of hostile material and physical forces. This idea is false: what you feel is only a vital force, not the highest truth, and the
body remains what it was; it will suffer and break down if [it] is not given food, rest and sleep.
5) It is the same mistaken vital exaltation that made you feel your body to see if it was of supramental substance. Understand
clearly that the body cannot be transformed in that way into something quite unphysical. The physical being and the body,
in order to be perfected, have to go through a long preparation and gradual change. This cannot be done, if you do not come
out of this mistaken vital exaltation and come down into the ordinary physical consciousness first, with a clear sense of physical
As regards what you say about your wife —
As you are determined to have no such relations with her, all that is needed is to regard her as an ordinary woman and
with a quiet indifference. It is a mistake to dwell on the idea of your past relations, or to have shrinking and abhorrence; that
only keeps up a struggle in your self which would otherwise disappear of itself.
Finally, if you want the real change and transformation, you must clearly and resolutely recognise that you have made
and are still making mistakes, and have entered into a condition
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that is unfavourable to your object. You have tried to get rid of the thinking mind, instead of perfecting and enlightening it, and
have tried to replace it by artificial "inspirations and intuitions."
You have developed a dislike and shrinking for the body and
the physical being and its movements; and therefore you do not want to come down into the normal physical consciousness and
do patiently there what is necessary for the change. You have left yourself only with a vital consciousness which feels sometimes a
great force and ananda and at others falls into bad depressions, because it is not supported either by the mind above or by the
You must absolutely change all this, if you want the real
You must not mind losing the vital exaltation; you must
not mind coming into a normal physical consciousness, with a clear practical mind, looking at physical conditions and physical
realities. You must accept these first, or you will never be able to change and perfect them.
You must recover a quiet mind and intelligence.
If you can once firmly do these things, the Greater Truth and
Consciousness can come back in its proper time, in the right way and under the right conditions.
March 22. 1926.
My dear Tirupati,
I have received all your letters; I am sorry to find from them that you are still persisting in the same state of vital exaltation,
the same ideas, the same forms of speech, the same delusions. You say that you have understood our letter of the 5th. We
.. told you to understand that letter in its plain significance and
not to put into it some false imaginary meaning out of your mind. Either you have put some false meaning into it or, if you
understood our plain written instructions, you are deliberately refusing to follow them. For you are doing exactly the opposite
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of what we told you to do. We shall write more about this in a day or two. At present I write only a few essential things.
1. It is not possible for you to become my "Avatar"; I have told you that the very idea is absurd and meaningless.
2 It is possible for you to manifest the supramental consciousness in this life. But it is not possible by the means you are
now trying. It cannot be done by falling at my feet. It cannot be done in a moment. It cannot be done by fasting. It cannot
be done by refusing to have anything to do with physical forces and the normal physical life.
3 If you throw away your body, you will not be my "Avatar" either in this life or in any other. On the contrary, you will destroy
your chances for a hundred lives to come.
4 The supramental consciousness can only be manifested if
you follow exactly my written instructions. These are
(1) You must eat well and regularly every day, sleep well
every night and build up a strong body. The supermind cannot descend and remain in a weak and starved body.
(2) You must consent to come down into the ordinary physical consciousness and stay there to transform it slowly.
continue to refuse to live in the ordinary consciousness, the supermind cannot get the opportunity to change it; in that case
you will always go on as now thinking "now I have got it, today it is made permanent", but it will not remain.
(3) You must learn to understand and follow in their plain sense my written instructions. You must learn to give them a
greater value than to the ideas you get from within by your sadhana.
If you refuse to do this, the supramental consciousness
will refuse to remain in you.
(4) You must learn to resume natural relations with people in
the physical world — with those around you, with your friends and your people.
5. I have told you that you are not to come to Pondicherry without my written permission.
If you disobey and follow your
own impulses, you will not be received here; you will be sent away like last time.
It is not for you to fix the date of your coming, whether
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August 15th or another. It is for me to decide and you must not ..
come till I write and call you.
You cannot come to Pondicherry till you have carried out my
written instructions plainly and faithfully for many months together. You cannot come till you have stopped fasting altogether.
You cannot come till you have descended into the ordinary physical consciousness and remained there for months together. You
cannot see me again at Pondicherry until you are ready to meet me on the physical plane and that can only be when you have
accepted the physical consciousness and the physical life. This is definite.
6. If you refuse to do what I tell you, you cannot have the fulfilment you hope for. You can if you like remain as a Bhakta
all your life, but even then you must renounce the vital form of Bhakti. You must bring back the psychic Bhakti, the Bhakti
which is calm, quiet, deep, the Bhakti which is not noisy, not making demands, the Bhakti which finds its greatest pleasure in
obedience. This is the only Bhakti in which I can take delight; I accept no other.
March 27 
Tirupati my child
I am happy to find you back again.
Your letters of March 25. reached this morning and are most welcomed.
All you have written in these two letters is exactly what we wanted you to think and feel.
You have only to keep this state of mind permanently; for this is the true foundation for the careful and patient building
of the real Divine Life in you.
If you feel any kind of excitement or demand for immediate
divinisation, or any idea of fasting, or impatience of staying there, then read again my letter of March 22 and it will help you
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to come back to the right idea and right attitude.
As to eating and sleeping, perhaps it will be best at the beginning to keep a daily record of the number of meals you take
and the number of hours you sleep and send it to me when you write. This will help you to keep [steady]10 in your resolution.
Yes, it will be very good for you to read and translate the Arya. We have not until now been able to get the numbers you
wanted from Calcutta, and at present we have not a set of the Arya available. I will send you a copy of the Essays on the
Gita, first series; it will be best for you to begin with this and translate it. Accustom yourself to translate only a little every day
and do it very carefully. Do not write in haste; go several times through what you have written and see whether it accurately
represents the spirit of the original, and whether the language cannot be improved. In all things, in the mental and physical
plane, it should be your aim, at present, not to go fast and finish quickly, but to do everything carefully, perfectly, and in the right
We wish you to understand and keep henceforth the right
attitude with regard to the physico-vital impulses of which you complain; that is as regards food, money, sexual impulses etc.
You have been adopting the moral and ascetic attitude which is entirely wrong and cannot help you to master these powers of
For food, it is a need of the body and you must use it to
keep the body fit and strong. You must replace attachment by the ananda of food. If you have this ananda and the right sense
of the taste, etc. and of the right use of food, the attachment, if there is any, will of itself, after a time, disappear.
As regards money, that too is a need for life and work. For instance, before you can come back here, when you have
reestablished your hold on physical life, we shall ask you to collect money for certain arrangements which will include the arrangements for your living here. Money represents a great power of life which must be conquered for divine uses. Therefore you
10 MS study
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must have no attachment to it but also no disgust or horror of it.
As to the sexual impulse
— For this also you must have no
moral horror, or puritanic, or ascetic repulsion. This also is a power of life and while you have to throw away the present form
of this power (that is the physical act), the force itself has to be mastered and transformed. It is often strongest in people with
a strong vital nature and this strong vital nature can be made a great instrument for the physical realisation of the Divine Life.
If the sexual impulse comes, do not be sorry or troubled, but look at it calmly, quiet it down, reject all wrong suggestions
connected with it, and wait for the Higher Consciousness to transform it into the true force and ananda.
As regards your friends and family, you must look at them normally as ordinary human beings. Here also have no attachments, no shrinkings; deal with them in a quiet rational manner. Your father-in-law has repeatedly promised me that they would
not interfere with your spiritual life. All they want is that you should eat and be in good health, and take their help for your
needs and comforts. It was only under my instructions that they pressed you to eat.
All these things we have told you are necessary for your being in the physical consciousness and having the right relations with physical life. In our next letter we will write to you in detail what we mean by being in the physical consciousness and
meeting us on the physical plane. But today there is no time and we want this letter to go by today's post.
We are sorry to see that you are not physically well. You
must be careful not to tire or overstrain yourself. You are walking too much, especially for a body weakened by fasting and
want of regular sleep. You should walk only some two and a half miles a day, in the fresh air, and when you are tired and
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not well, you should suspend the walking and rest as much as possible.
Do not eat hot things; it is extremely bad for your intestines. But take plenty of good plain food.
Especially you must sleep regularly. It is most important. You must also bathe and keep your body clean. If you can
arrange, bathe in hot water.
If you follow these instructions carefully, good health must
come back with the returning strength of the body. You have overstrained yourself in every way and weakened yourself nervously, that is why these things come back.
The true explanation of the vision you saw of dark dancing
women is not the one you put upon it. The vaishnava bhajan is one that easily excites the vital being, and if there are people
there of a low nature, all sorts of dark and low forces come in to feed upon the excitement. These are the women you saw; they
had nothing to do with you or with sexual impulses.
You ought not to attach too much importance to impulses
like the one you had about going downstairs to the puja, or think that because you do not obey the impulse you have prevented
the spiritual experience of fulfilment. The spiritual fulfilment will come in its time by a steady development of the being
and the nature. It does not depend on seizing upon this or that opportunity.
There is another thing which you must learn. If you are interrupted in sadhana, as by the boy coming with the water, you
must simply remain inwardly quiet and allow the interruption to pass. If you learn to do this, the inner state or experience
will go on afterwards just as if nothing had happened. If you attach undue importance and get upset, on the contrary, you
change the interruption into a disturbance and the inner state or experience ceases. Always keep the inner quiet and confidence
in every circumstance; allow nothing to disturb it or to excite you. A steady inner calm and quiet will and psychic faith and
bhakti are the one true foundation for your sadhana.
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[c. March April 1926]
We answer first your letter of the 28th.
It is evident that you are suffering from a nervous reaction
due to overstrain. You have allowed for a long time an excessive vital energy kept up by a concentration of vital excitement to
tyrannise over your body. The body was being weakened all the time, but the vital excitement prevented you from feeling
it. Now it is making itself felt. The pains you have seem to be partly rheumatic, partly due to fatigue of the nerves. If you
want to recover your strength, you must consent to take plenty of rest. Do not consider long rest and repose tamasic. Sleep long
at night, rest much during the day.
Do not do anything in excess. 8 to 10 miles a day walking
is far too much; two to three miles is quite sufficient, enough to give you air and exercise.
Also, five or six hours meditation is quite sufficient. Ten hours is too much; it is likely to overstrain the system. Intense
meditation is not the only means of sadhana. Especially when one has to deal with the physical, it is not good to be always
drawn within in meditation. What you have to learn is to keep at all times the true consciousness, calm, large, full of a quiet
strength, looking at all in you and around you with true perception and knowledge, a calm unmoved observation and a quiet
will ready to act when necessary. No overstress, no yielding to excitement, nervous sensitiveness or depression.
Learn to occupy your time in a quiet even and harmonious way. Walk a little but not too much. Meditate, but not too
much, nor so as to overstrain the body. Read and write, but not so as to tire the brain. Look out a good deal on the physical
world and its action and try to see it rightly. When you are stronger, but not now, you can undertake also some kind of
physical work and action and learn to do it in the right way and with the right knowledge.
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You say that you do not find it so easy to understand the "Arya" as before. But that is mostly because you have made your
body weak and the brain is easily tired. With rest and return of physical strength this will disappear. You say too that you cannot
do things now that you were easily able to do before. But then you were keeping some kind of harmonious balance between
the mind, the vital being and the body, and all were strong. Afterwards you went entirely into the vital and neglected and
fatigued the body; you kept yourself up only by an abnormal vital concentration and excitement. Now you are feeling the
physical reaction. But this too will disappear with rest, calm of mind and the return of physical strength.
Therefore do not scruple to rest much. It will be good to remain quiet for long periods of time and allow the calm and
quiet effect of the higher consciousness to settle unobtrusively into the body.
Your "tamasic" condition and pains are not in the least due to taking food from your people or to their atmosphere. Dismiss
this kind of idea from your mind altogether; it is entirely untrue.
The sensations you have when going out into the town,
in the streets, in the market, meeting women, seeing people with illnesses are all signs of nervous weakness and [ ]11 an
abnormally exaggerated nervous sensitiveness. You must get rid of this weakness and recover control of your nerves. You
must become able to see women without any of these reactions; dismiss from your mind the obsession of your fear of the sexual
impulse and this will become easier. The fear and abhorrence makes the sexual attraction or suggestion itself come more persistently. Learn to be calm and indifferent. If you observe the atmosphere of people, observe it as something external to you,
not affecting you. To be affected is simply due to a weakness of the nervous being. At Pondicherry I am afraid you encouraged
this nervous weakness and shrinking with the idea that it was a sign of superior psychic sensitiveness. Get rid of this idea. You
may be conscious of things around you and yet calm and strong
11 MS and
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to meet them without being affected and overcome.
One other point. It is something else than the truth that gives
the forms of your mother and wife to the feminine figures seen by you at the time of sexual suggestions. Do not be constantly
thinking of your wife in this connection; regard her like any other woman without attachment and without repulsion or shrinking.
I do not believe she has enough force to project herself into your consciousness in the way you think she does: it is your mental
association that helps to [create]12 the image. Repulsion and shrinking (jugupsa) are a bad way of getting rid of things; they
usually give more force to what you want to throw from you.
Before you go to sleep, do not be satisfied with prayer, but
bring down and leave in the body a strong will against any sexual suggestion in sleep or its result. With a little practice the
body will learn to take the inhibiting suggestion and these things will cease.
In one of your letters you speak of a voice telling you "Mira will never consent to be your Shakti". What precisely do you
mean by this phrase, "my Shakti"? It is a wrong way of putting it which may lead to a confusion of ideas. You mean perhaps
that she is to you the Mahashakti and that the force which will descend on you from the supramental plane and support your
sadhana and action, will come from her. That is all right; but the Mahashakti is the Ishwara's and nobody can speak of her as
Lastly, you speak in regard to your experience of coming
here to this house of coming here "in the supermind". What happened was that you entered into a supraphysical consciousness and in that state some part of you came over here. You speak too easily of any kind of supraphysical consciousness as
if it were necessarily the supermind. But there are many grades of consciousness between the physical and the supermind and
you will have hereafter to learn to distinguish rightly between them. Moreover even when the supramental touches or descends
into the intermediate grades or into the physical, that is merely
12 MS creates
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a glimpse of what may or will be; it is not the whole or the definite realisation. The realisation must be worked out patiently
afterwards. If you understand this carefully, you will no longer be disappointed because a higher condition does not settle down
in you at once "permanently".
I think you write your letters too rapidly; it is often very
difficult, sometimes impossible to read many of the words. Write carefully so that all may be clear and legible.
[c. March April 1926]
I have received your long, rambling, incoherent, excited letter of the 29th; it is from beginning to end a mass of almost insane nonsense.
I understand from it that you have returned to your former delusions and the lies imposed by some Hostile Force on your
mind and your vital being. You are once more determined to revolt against my orders, to disobey my written instructions, to
disregard the plain meaning of my letters. You are determined to deceive yourself by reading into them a "hidden" meaning, that
is to say to read into them the lies of the Hostile Force which you take for inspirations and intuitions. You have decided to follow
again the mad course which led you away from Pondicherry and exiled you from my presence.
You have disowned your letter of the [? ] the only letter
which was entirely sound, true and sane. In that letter of the [?
] we saw the real Tirupati, the only Tirupati we know; with the other who wrote this letter of the 29th we have no connection.
[6 May 1926]
Your aspiration to be my manifestation and all the rest of the
delusions to which you have surrendered yourself are not Yoga
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or Sadhana. They are an illusion of your vital being and your brain. We tried to cure you and for a few days while you were
obeying my instructions you were on the point of being cured. But you have called back your illness and made it worse than
before. You seem to be no longer capable even of understanding what I write to you; you read your own delusions into my letters.
I can do nothing more for you.
All that I can tell you is to go back to Vizianagaram and
allow yourself to be taken care of there. I can make no arrangements for you anywhere. I can give only a last advice. Throw
away the foolish arrogance and vanity that have been the cause of your illness, consent to become like an ordinary man living
in the normal physical mind.
Now that is your only means of being saved from your
To Daulatram Sharma
I have shown your letter to A.G. and below I give you his
answer to it.13
Your letter is very interesting, because it shows that you
have accurate intuitions which unfortunately your mind does not allow you to follow out. Your mind also interferes by giving your
intuitions a mental form and mental consequences or conditions which are not correct.
You are quite right when you say that your sadhana will not open through the mind but through your psychic being. It is
from there indeed that these guiding intuitions come.
Your intuition that in your case the effective impulse can
best come from Mira (you can call her Mira Devi if you like, but please don't call her Madame!) is also perfectly correct. When
13 This letter was drafted by one of Sri Aurobindo's secretaries and completely rewritten
by Sri Aurobindo in his own hand. — Ed.
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she saw you from the window on the terrace on your last visit, she herself said to A.G., "This is a man I can change.
But he is
not yet ready". But it was your mind that interfered when you thought it was necessary to sit in meditation with her in order
to receive what she has to give. There is no such condition for her spiritual or psychic action and influence.
It is true that she was not mixing with the sadhaks at that time, partly because they themselves were not ready to take
the right relation and receive her influence, partly because the difficulties of the physical plane made it necessary for her to
retire from all direct contact with anyone, as distinct from an indirect contact through A.G. Always however she was acting
with him on the psychic and vital levels to do whatever might be possible at the time. All that is needed to receive a direct touch
from her is to take the right relation to her, to be open and to enter her atmosphere. The most ordinary meeting or talk with
her on the physical plane is quite enough for the purpose. Only the sadhaka must be ready; otherwise he may not receive the
impulse or may not be able to fulfil it or bear its pressure.
Also it will be a mistake if you make too rigid a separation
between A.G and Mira. Both influences are necessary for the complete development of the sadhana. The work of the two
together can alone bring down the supramental Truth into the physical plane. A.G acts directly on the mental and on the vital
being through the illumined mind; he represents the Purusha element whose strength is predominantly in illumined (intuitive,
supramental or spiritual) knowledge and the power that acts in this knowledge, while the psychic being supports this action
and helps to transform the physical and vital plane. Mirra acts directly on the psychic being and on the emotional, vital and
physical nature through the illumined psychic consciousness, while the illumined intuitions from the supramental being give
her the necessary knowledge to act on the right lines and at the right moment. Her force representing the Shakti element is
directly psychic, vital, physical and her spiritual knowledge is predominantly practical in its nature. It is, that is to say, a large
and detailed knowledge and experience of the mental, vital and
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physical forces at play and with the knowledge the power to handle them for the purposes of life and of Yoga.
In your case what is strong in your nature is especially the dynamic mind, the vital force and the practical physical mind.
The thinking mind in you in spite of the interest it has taken in religion and philosophy is not easily open to a true illumination.
The other parts mentioned above could more easily accept the light, but they cannot find it for themselves because their whole
strength and activity has been turned outwards. It is only the psychic being in you that has from time to time been giving you
intuitions and turning you towards the Truth. But it could not come forward and lead your life because you have too much
suppressed your emotional nature, dried up your surface mind and choked up with much rubbish the psychic fire. If once it can
awaken entirely and come in front, it can transform the dynamic mental, the vital and the physical mind and through them make
you an illumined instrument for the physical realisation of the Truth upon earth. This, as you can see from what has been
said above about Mira's force, makes your nature one which is specially meant for the kind of work she can best do.
You did not quite understand what A.G. had said about Brahmacharya. He did not mean that you should indulge the
sexual impulse freely. On the contrary, if you have the impulse to cease from sexual life you should by all means do it. What
he meant to say was that by Brahmacharya is generally understood a mental & moral control, a cessation because of a mental
rule. Such a control especially if undertaken from an ascetic or puritan attitude, only keeps chained or even suppresses the vital
power behind the sexual impulse and does not really purify or change it. The true motive for overcoming the sexual impulse
is the inner psychic and when that rises then comes the real will to an inner purity which makes it an inner necessity for the
being to drop the animal sexual play and turn the life-force to greater uses. The vital power behind the sexual impulse is an
indispensable force for the perfection of the nature and for the Yoga. Often it is those who because of the strong vital force
in them are most capable of the supramental transformation of
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the physical nature that have the strongest sexual impulses. All
lust, the sexual act and the outward dragging impulse have to be thrown away by the sadhaka, but the power itself has to
be kept and transformed into the true force and Ananda. You are right in thinking that a certain fundamental purity in this
respect is needed in order to approach Mira and have her help. It is not possible for her to have relations with one who is full
of coarse animal or perverted sexual impulses or unable because of them to have the true spiritual or psychic regard on women.
But an absence of all sexual impulse is not necessary, still less an ascetic or puritanic turn in this matter. On the contrary. Neither
the conventional Puritan nor the coarse animal man can receive anything from her.
This is what A.G said about your letter. Now, since you have these intuitions, why not act on them? Why not try even from
a distance to open yourself to receive any influence which may come to you by the mere fact of your having turned towards
Mira and her knowing it? If nothing else happens, the necessary psychic preparation (so far your preparation has been only
mental) may take place. At least, you could try it. Only do keep your mind quiet
— not silent or blank — but put outside you;
look at the thoughts if they rise, but wait for a higher truth, for the psychic being to come forward, for the psychic intuition to
speak, and when it comes do not let the mind meddle. If there is something not quite clear, wait for more light. Give your soul a
chance, that is what is needed.
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