August 1, 1970
(Mother gives Satprem the message for August 15:)
"Even the body shall remember God."
(Then she translates another quotation from Sri Aurobindo:)
"Whatever sufferings come on the path, are not
too high a
price for the victory that has to be won
and if they are taken in the right spirit, they
become even a means towards the victory."
Letters on Yoga, 24.1636
We've made brochures, On India, and then five cards with quotations.
(Mother gives Satprem the texts)
I am told you said that the Chinese threat to India was "inescapable"?
No, I didn't say that.... Who said that?
It's attributed to P. B. You know, things get distorted....
Yes, completely distorted. I said it was "serious." Because they aren't conscious, the government wasn't at all conscious of the danger. So I had them warned. But I didn't say it was "inescapable"; I said it was dangerous - if it were inescapable, I wouldn't have done anything!
You know that Calcutta's walls are all covered with slogans: "The
Chairman of China is our chairman." The atmosphere is like that. A gentleman who, I think, headed the University there, [[P. K. Basu, vice-chancellor or the Calcutta University. He paid a visit to Mother in June. ]] or the official in charge of education, came here to ask us to go and do something in Bengal - I saw him. It seems he is scared stiff.... He asked us to go and do something. So it's almost officially that we're called there.
The response in Orissa is excellent.
But there is ... I think it's the Chief Minister, or a minister from Madras, [[M. Karunanidhi, Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu. ]] who went to France because a Tamil congress was held there, and he met Z, who is our friend. [[An officer in the Indian Embassy in Paris. ]] And he told Z that he and the Madras government in general are "very guarded about the Ashram" because we are "Bengalis" ... (I forget - absolutely stupid!) and "what we say isn't true." Anyway ... such stupid things that I can't even remember them. And that's the official attitude. He said, "We'd rather have foreigners there than Bengalis, because we will be more secure." There you are! Absolutely imbecile.
So we are in a ... bizarre situation: the whole anti-government movement in India doesn't want us to be helped by the government; and the government of one province says we are friends with another province and we shouldn't be friends ... So to please them, we would have to become as stupid as they are.
P. B., I don't know what he says, but he read me something he had written, which was good. He said the danger is serious - and it's true.... But there have been remarkable things: for instance some young people from that pro-Chinese movement [the "Naxalites"], who want the Chinese, have written to me to ask me if that is right, if they should be like that, and ... "We'll do as you say." So it shows that in any case the Influence is strong.... There are signs ... there is hope. No, it's not inescapable. It's dangerous, but not inescapable....
But among themselves they're worse than hooligans! They quarrel in a very petty manner, and that's what makes the work difficult.
But I've learned things about the Tibetans.... The Tibetans are with us, but
a Tibetan boy who came here recounted some frightful things.... They fled from
their country and had settled near the border (they lived in huts near the
border, with his father, mother and grandfather). A Tibetan came and asked them
for shelter. They took him and put him up. But after some time (I don't know how
many days), a group of other Tibetans came to find that man, saying he
was an enemy. So those Tibetans (I thought they were all the "victims of the
Chinese" - they are the victims of their own division), they came and killed the
father, mother and grandfather; they tried to kill the son but missed: he
escaped and is now here. Incredible stories! So they're all like that, arguing
and quarreling among themselves - naturally, if they continue ... they open the
door to everything.
So some tell me, "Don't be with this man, because ..." and others tell me, "Don't be with those, because they are enemies...." There you are!
So we answer, "We are with everybody."
One wonders what will have the power to pull India out of all
They must be pulled out of politics.
Sri Aurobindo said in black and white what they should do.
I said (I saw the governor, he comes and sees me), I told him, "You have an exceptional chance, it's the Centenary; it's an opportunity which gives you a sort of right to push it forward - use it, use this opportunity; you have two years to counter the movement."
But we can't openly say we are with them, because ... that would cut off a whole party - we are with nobody. We are only with Sri Aurobindo - with nobody. Those who come, whoever they are, are welcome.
This (Mother points to the brochures) is part of the literature we distribute, there are very good things in it. I haven't read it.
It's a series of questions and answers about all kinds of problems: education, language, and so on.
Are there answers from Sri Aurobindo?
I don't know, it's not signed. Yet I see one thing from you....
Nothing is quoted or signed, so one doesn't know if it's from Sri
Aurobindo, from you or from someone else.
But we are obliged to let the idea stand on its own, because if we present it in the name of someone they don't like, they'll chuck it out!
They wanted to involve me in the action but I refused. I said,
"No, I don't want to." I don't want to get involved in this: I am not
Indian, and I don't want to be pushed to the fore so that one day they'll
suddenly say there's a "foreigner meddling in our affairs." I forbade them to
say, "Mother said this ... Mother said that...." No thanks!
Yes, but that's how they are!
It's comfortable when one is ... (gesture in the background). Yet I see some of them, they come, more and more of them. I can't always refuse.
That's why, that's the reason why I didn't want to write something of my own to this Msgr. R. I don't want to, I don't want people to say, "Oh, there's a woman who ... Mother who ..." - that doesn't exist! (Mother laughs)