June 15, 1968
Mother looks at
an orange amaryllis
It's pretty.... I don't know why, it always gives me the impression of a church....
You too? Why?... It's very pretty. So I don't know why. It gives the impression ... of an artificial adoration!
* * *
Satprem reads Mother
a letter of Sri Aurobindo:
"In our yoga we mean by the subconscient that quite submerged part of our being in which there is no wakingly conscious and coherent thought, will or feeling or organized reaction, but which yet receives obscurely the impressions of all things and stores them up in itself and from it too all sorts of stimuli, of persistent habitual movements, crudely repeated or disguised in strange forms can surge up into dream or into the waking nature. For if these impressions rise up most in dream in an incoherent and disorganized manner, they can also and do rise up into our waking consciousness as a mechanical repetition of old thoughts, old mental, vital and physical habits or an obscure stimulus to sensations, actions, emotions which do not originate in or from our conscious thought or will and are even often opposed to its perceptions, choice or dictates. In the subconscient there is an obscure mind full of obstinate Sanskaras [imprints or habits], impressions, associations, fixed notions, habitual reactions formed by our past, an obscure vital full of the seeds of habitual desires, sensations and nervous reactions, a most obscure material which governs much that has to do with the condition of the body. It is largely responsible for our illnesses; chronic or repeated illnesses are indeed mainly due to the subconscient and its obstinate memory and habit of repetition of whatever has impressed itself upon the body-consciousness. But this subconscient must be clearly distinguished from the subliminal parts of our being such as the inner or subtle physical consciousness, the inner vital or inner mental; for these are not at all obscure or incoherent or ill-organized, but only veiled from our surface consciousness. Our surface constantly receives something, inner touches, communications or influences, from these sources but does not know for the most part whence they come.
"As for asserting one's will in sleep it is simply a matter of accustoming the subconscient to obey the will laid upon it by the waking mind before sleeping. It very often happens for instance that if you fix upon the subconscient your will to wake up at a particular hour in the morning, the subconscient will obey and you wake up automatically at that hour. This can be extended to other matters. Many have found that by putting a will against sexual dreams or emission on the subconscient before sleeping, there comes after a time (it does not always succeed at the beginning) an automatic action causing one to awake before the dream concludes or before it begins or in some way preventing the thing forbidden from happening. Also one can develop a more conscious sleep in which there is a sort of inner consciousness which can intervene."[[Cent. Ed., vol. 22, p. 353. ]]
June 24, 1934
Now I remember very well! Sri Aurobindo used to read me the things he wrote before sending them.
* * *
Then, regarding a Playground
Talk of June 24, 1953
You say, "An illness is quite simply, always and in every case,
even when doctors tell you there are germs - in every case it's a
disequilibrium in the being: a disequilibrium between various
functionings, a disequilibrium between forces...."
I don't know, but if you say, "a disequilibrium between
various functionings," then it seems to be purely physical. I
feel something is missing to say that it's a disequilibrium in
the PSYCHOLOGICAL being or functioning?
For a few days, and it's becoming increasingly established, there has been an
impression that health or illness is a choice (to express it
simply). A choice of every minute. For this body, at any rate, that's how it
It means abdicating with regard to the general functioning of the physical substance, of the body, and having illnesses you get cured of or not, depending on ... other laws than physical laws. But there is every minute - every minute - the possibility to choose the true consciousness, or there is, yes, a disorder or disequilibrium. It's something which is unable to follow the movement of progressive harmony, or sometimes even which doesn't want to. I am talking about cells and groups of cells.
Most of the time, it's a sort of laziness, something unwilling to make an effort, to make a resolve: it prefers to leave the responsibility to others. In English I would call it the remnant, the residue of the Inconscient. It's a sort of spinelessness (gesture of groveling) which accepts a general, impersonal law: you paddle about in illness. And in response to that, there is inside, every minute, the sense of the true attitude, which in the cells is expressed with great simplicity: "There is the Lord, who is the all-powerful Master." Something like that. "It depends entirely on Him. If a surrender is to be made, it's to Him." I make sentences, but for the cells it's not sentences. It's a tiny little movement that expresses itself by repeating the mantra; then the mantra is full - full of force - and there is instantly the surrender: "May Your Will be done," and a tranquillity - a luminous tranquillity. And one sees that there was absolutely no imperative need to be ill or for the disequilibrium to occur.
The phenomenon recurs HUNDREDS of times a day, for very small things.
And then, it gives increasingly a sense of the unreality - the fundamental unreality - of illnesses. That's what I say here [in the Talk]: it's merely a disequilibrium. It's the habit of leaving it to a sort of impersonal collective will of the most material Nature, which organizes things IN THEIR APPEARANCE.
That's the sort of work being done at present, these last few days -
constantly, constantly. The only moment when it's not done is when I see people,
because when I see people, there's only one thing left: the Lord's Presence, and
plunging them in that bath of the Lord. That goes on, it's always there. So that
even if, before [seeing people], there was a difficulty or struggle or conflict
between the two states, and a will to hold on, at such times it goes away,
because that's not the work then: the work is to plunge all those coming near
into the Presence - the immutable
Presence, constant, active ... close.
That would tend to show that the possibility of what's called illness is something CONSTANT, a constant state in which you are or aren't; and this "you are or aren't" depends on ... many things, especially on your remembering - remembering the sole divine Presence and Reality - and on your way of acting. Life is a series of continuous activities, which last for a longer or shorter time, absorb you more or less, give you a greater or lesser sense of importance or lack of importance - but it's a sort of series of continuous activities; and what's called rest, that is, when the material body is relatively motionless, is an activity on another level and of another kind. And the state of union - of REALIZED union, that is, not something that comes in a flash and goes away, but an established state in which you have a sense of continuity, except when the central Consciousness and Will impel you to leave it ... (Mother goes into a contemplation, leaving her sentence unfinished).
So what exactly is your question?
What you say here gives an impression that an illness has purely
physical causes. So it might be necessary to add somewhere
the word "consciousness" or "psychological." You say, "It's
always a disequilibrium in the being, a disequilibrium between
various functionings, a disequilibrium between forces...." It
gives an impression of being something purely material.
There are no such things as purely material forces.
If you like, the only distinction that may be made is between a greater or lesser degree of consciousness. And the appearance of materiality is in proportion to the unconsciousness.
You understand, it has reached a point where there is an impression of
fluidity and plasticity asserting itself increasingly with the growth of the
true consciousness. The hardening seems to be the result of Unconsciousness; the
lack of fluidity and plasticity seems to be the result of Unconsciousness. Not
only in the body: for everything the impression is the same. With the growth and
the normal state of consciousness, there comes a suppleness and fluidity that
completely change the nature of the substance, and
the resistance comes from the degree of unconsciousness alone, it's
proportional to the degree of unconsciousness.
All this way of speaking [as in the Talk], the ordinary way of speaking seems to be ... yes, a manner of speaking, that's right! But it doesn't correspond to fact. It doesn't correspond to reality. It's a manner of speaking, a manner of feeling, a manner of seeing - an old habit. But it's not that.
The work is in full activity here, but there isn't enough distance to talk about it.
The interesting thing regarding this body is that I have a growing impression ... of a "residue" which still remains unconscious. Because in my state (which is becoming more and more normal), I feel ("feel," it's a material sensation) at a distance of at least two feet. And when I am consciously concentrated on a thing or an individual, I MATERIALLY feel from inside that consciousness and that individual. For instance, if someone acts with a very unconscious movement, it hurts. It's like giving me a blow.
And it's increasingly that way.
More and more often, there are times (people think I am asleep, I find it very funny! They think I am asleep ...), times when I follow the movement like that, apparently wholly concentrated; and the sensitivity, the consciousness is spread all around, everywhere, or on one point for a specific work, but MATERIALLY spread - not mentally (it's a long time since that has been still, and it's more and more so); vitally, it's very peaceful - MATERIALLY.
What I don't know yet, what's not very clear, is ... what will be the fate of this residue? To people's ordinary thought, it's what they call "death," that is to say, the rejection of the cells that weren't able to enter this plastic state of consciousness. But the way the work is being done, there is no categorical division [into groups of conscious or unconscious cells in Mother's body]: there are imperceptible (almost) states of variations between the different parts of the being. So you wonder, "Where? What? When? How? What's going to happen?..." It's increasingly becoming a problem....
The whole inner functioning is becoming more and more the result of that
conscious action and conscious will; with, even, in part (at least in part)
clearly the true functioning already. You understand, the impression is of a
remnant, but the remnant isn't
something that's rejected: it's something which hesitates, lags behind,
has difficulty and tries - it would be only too pleased: if, for instance, there
is in one spot a perceptible disorder, a pain, the body no longer starts
fidgeting, worrying, wanting medicine or doctors or interventions, no, not at
all; it asks ... it goes, "O ... Lord ... ," like that. That's all. And it
waits. And generally, in the space of a few seconds, the pain goes away.
What complicates matters is the ENTRY from outside of formations, with thoughts, ignorant attitudes (swarming gesture around), impressions - all kinds of impressions. Most of the time it has no effect, but sometimes it gives a shock. So that complicates matters somewhat.
So all this way of putting things [in the Talk] is antiquated. Better leave it as it is.
Or if, for the sentence to be clear, you need to add a word, add it.
Since you say that illness is a "disequilibrium between various
functionings," I was proposing to add, "between various func
tionings of consciousness"?
Not functionings of consciousness.
Because it all appears to be purely material! It seems to me we
add a word giving an inner sense.
Yes, for this body, it's what we might call "purely material": there's no vital or mental intervention. What generally happens to people is that the vital intervenes and so does the mind - that never, ever happens [in Mother]. That belongs to the past, there's no question of it any longer. Everything takes place purely in the physical consciousness. So for the ordinary consciousness, it's disequilibriums between the various functionings of breathing, digestion, blood circulation and so on. But for me, all that has become the expression of something else.
But I haven't yet reached the point where I can explain it in an understandable way.
So I think it's better to leave it.
What time is it?
We could do some translation.... Is the Bulletin ready?
Everything is ready, Mother, except the "Notes on the Way."
The "Notes," we'll leave them out.
Unless we put what you've said today?
Who can understand? I myself can't explain clearly.
But I feel one catches something. 1, at least, feel I catch some thing. Maybe I am wrong.
On the contrary, it's very ...
As for me, I feel more and more as if I were speaking to people in Chinese.
I can't explain anymore, they can't understand anymore. In your case, of course, you have followed the thing step by step, so you are used to it, but others don't understand - no one anymore, I can no longer say anything to anyone.
Relationships with people are so different! ... It's constantly as I told you: a movement of unconsciousness is a shock; and there are things ...
I can't explain, it's not possible.
Like this fact that I am increasingly stooped (although it's neither the result of fatigue nor the result of a lack of equilibrium, nor ... it has no material cause), my impression is that the present part of the body (or rather the part belonging to the past) is shrinking, while I myself, my consciousness, I am so vast and on the contrary so large and so powerful, but at a distance, you understand! ... I don't know how to explain, it's a strange sensation. It's as if you were still dragging some old baggage along. [[Mother
later added, "Yes, old baggage. But it's not that it's refusing to change, it's
not that! It's that it requires TIME." ]] But
it's not that it isn't willing.... It's more or less difficult, you
understand, so it takes more or less time. It's like elements lagging behind.
But the new way of being would only be visible to someone who himself or herself had the supramental vision.... I MATERIALLY see all sorts of things, which aren't visible to others (Mother looks around Satprem). But it's materially.
A funny state.
Do we have time to translate? One piece, maybe ... to give ourselves the illusion of having done something!
* * *
Mother takes up the translation
of a text by Sri Aurobindo:
"This question of free-will and determination is
the most knotty of
all metaphysical questions and
nobody has been able to solve it - for a good reason
destiny and will exist and even a free
will exists somewhere; the difficulty
is only how
to get at it and make it effective."
That's perfectly true! It's perfectly true, it's again part of my present experience. It's as if, somewhere, I were suddenly told, "But just say, 'I want this'!" (But not with words: words are a travesty.) Then a little something in the being goes like this (gesture of gathering), and ... there it is. And it's true. FOR THE BODY (I don't mean for thought or feelings: once and for all, we are leaving all that aside), only for the body, something that says, "But you just have to say, 'I want this, this must be'" (not with words), and something does indeed go like this (same gesture of gathering), goes like this in a blue light - a bright sapphire - and ... there it is. There it is. It's very simple.
Only, one can't explain because one uses words that have another meaning. Saying, "You just have to will" would be nonsense.
Is that all? Do we do one more translation? Are the texts long ones?
Five and nine pages.
That will be for another time.
But they will ask me all that, they're already growing impatient. And then, they think (they're very polite, very well-mannered), they think, "Mother is ... she is going down"! (Mother laughs)
All of a sudden ... while I am doing something, writing or listening or anything, all of a sudden I'll enter a consciousness in which I see all relationships differently, and also a sort of power wanting to learn to wield itself; so of course, it's extremely interesting, and instead of going on with what I am doing, I follow the movement ... "Here's Mother falling asleep again"! And I read their thoughts, as clear as daylight, their reactions.... Still, I am polite, I don't tell them anything. If I weren't polite, it would cause disasters.
But anyway, there will be one person to know!
But I'd like to know ... (I am beginning to be interested in the problem, I am looking at it): will this residue ... (Mother breaks off). But the question isn't like that, it's a question of TIME. With time (Sri Aurobindo said three hundred years), with time EVERYTHING would get to change. But there is the wave of habits, and the easy solution which consists in quite simply taking this (Mother points to her own body as to an old garment) and throwing it away: "Off with you, I no longer want you!" It's disgusting. Because it can no longer get along fast enough, one takes it and says, "Off with you! Go away, I no longer want you, go to decomposition." It's disgusting.
And I FEEL the atmosphere. There is the whole collective thought, people writing to me, "I hope you'll still live for a long time"! (Mother laughs) And all the usual nonsense. You know, they are so full of idiotic goodwill.... It makes a difficult environment.
I look at this body; at times it says (at times, when there is too much incomprehension, when the people around are too absolutely unwilling to understand), it says, "Ah, let me go." It says to me ("it," what is it? What's still unconscious, too unconscious and not receptive enough), it says, "Very well, leave me, it doesn't matter, let me go." Like that. Not disgusted or tired, but ... Then it's really pitiful. So I say to it (in a tone of voice as if speaking to a child): "No, no, no."
It's a question of patience, of course. Question of patience.
What's going to happen?
I don't know. We'll see.
You, at any rate, you will know.
You'll be able to tell them (laughing), "Things are not as you think they are...." I would tell them, but they won't hear me. [[When Satprem tried to "tell them," they attempted to censor this Agenda and expelled Satprem through a registered letter. Today in 1995, Mother's Agenda is read in the Ashram only on the sly and is banned at the School. ]]
I don't know ... I don't know what's going to happen. What's going to happen? Do YOU know?
One day it will be glorious.
When you do something for the first time, no one can explain it to you.