Mother Answers on Money - I
does money manifest on other planes?
other planes? He [Sri Aurobindo] speaks of the vital and physical,
doesn't he?... that it is a force which manifests on the vital
plane and the physical plane. The vital forces have a very
great influence over money.
a silence)... You see, when one thinks of money, one
thinks of bank-notes or coins or some kind of wealth, some
precious things. But this is only the physical expression
of a force which may be handled by the vital and which,
when possessed and controlled, almost automatically brings
along these more material expressions of money. And that
is a kind of power. (Silence)... It is a power of
attracting certain very material vibrations, which has a
capacity for utilisation that increases its strengthwhich
is like the action of physical exercise, you seeit
increases its strength through utilisation.
For example, if you have a control over this forceit
is a force which, in the vital world, has a colour varying
between red, a dark, extremely strong red and a deep gold
that's neither bright nor very pale. Well, this forcewhen
it is made to move, to circulate, its strength increases.
It is not something one can accumulate and keep without
using. It is a force which must always be circulated. For
example, people who are misers and accumulate all the money,
all the wealth they can attract towards themselves, put
this force aside without using its power of movement; and
either it escapes or it lies benumbed and loses its strength.
The true method of being in the stream of this money-power
is precisely what is written here: a sense of absolute impersonality,
the feeling that it is not something you possess or which
belongs to you, but that it is a force you can handle and
direct where it ought to go in order to do the most useful
work. And by these movements, by this constant action, the
power increasesthe power of attraction, a certain
power of organisation also. That is to say, even somebody
who has no physical means, who is not in those material
circumstances where he could materially handle money, if
he is in possession of this force, he can make it act, make
it circulate, and if ever he finds it necessary, receives
from it as much power as he needs without there being externally
any sign or any reason why the money should come to him.
He may be in conditions which are absolutely the very opposite
of those of usual wealth, and yet can handle this force
and always have at his disposal all the wealth that's necessary
to carry on his work.
Therefore, it was like this, you see: this letter was written
to someone who wanted to go out from here to collect money
for Sri Aurobindo's work, and this person had no means at
all. So he began by saying to Sri Aurobindo, "But as
I myself have no means, people will have no trust in me,
and I won't be able to get anything." And Sri Aurobindo
answered him something like this, that it is not the external
force in its most material form which is necessary, it is
the handling of the inner force which gives one control
over money wherever it is: whether it is in public institutions
or with individuals, one obtains control over it and one
can, when it is necessary, attract by a certain movement
what is needed.
Mother, in what way have the money-forces left the Divine?
child repeats its question.)
is precisely the main word in your question which I don't
understand. In what manner, in what way have the money-forces...
left the Divine?
The money-power belongs to a world which was created deformed.
It is something that belongs to the vital world; and he
says this, doesn't he? He says that it belongs to the vital
and material worlds. And so at all times, always it was
under the control of the Asuric forces; and what must be
done is precisely to reconquer it from the Asuric forces.
That is why in the past, all those who wanted to do Yoga
or follow a discipline, used to say that one should not
touch money, for it was somethingthey saiddiabolic
or Asuric or at least altogether opposed to the divine life.
But the whole universe, in all its manifestation, is the
Divine Himself, and so belongs entirely to Him; and it is
on this ground that he says that the money-forces belong
to the Divine. One must reconquer them and give them to
Him. They have been under the influence of the Asuric forces:
one must win them back in order to put them at the disposal
of the Divine so that He may be able to use them for His
work of transformation.
Mother, it is men who have created money. Then how is it
a divine power?
(laughing)... It is as though you told me: it is
a man and woman who have created another person, then how
can he be divine in essence? It is exactly the same thing!
The whole creation is made externally by external things,
but behind that there are divine forces. What men have inventedpaper
or coins or other objectsall these are but means of
expression nothing else but that... I just said this a moment
ago, it is not the force itself, it is its material expression
as men have created it. But this is purely conventional.
For example, there are countries where small shells are
exchanged instead of money. There are even countries where...
Someone has written a story like this: in the North wealth
means having hooks for fishing; and the rich man is he who
has the greatest number of fish-hooks. You know what these
are, don't you?small iron hooks for cahing fish which
are fixed at the end of the line. So, the multimillionaire
is one who has a huge number of hooks!
It is purely conventional. What is behind is the force I
am speaking about, you see, and so it manifests in all sorts
of ways. For example, even gold, you know... men have given
a certain value to gold, because of all metals it deteriorates
the least. It is preserved almost indefinitely. And this
is the reason, there's no other. But it is a mere convention.
The proof is that each time a new gold-mine is found and
exploited, the value of gold has fallen. These are mere
conventions between human beings. But what makes money a
power is not this, it is the force that's behind. As I was
saying a while ago, it is a force that is able to attract
and use anything whatever, all material things and...
So this is used according to a convention. Now, it is understood
that wealth is represented by bits of paper which become
very dirty, and on which something is printed. They are
altogether disgusting, most often good only for lighting
the fire. But it is considered a great fortune. Why? Because
that's the convention. Yet one who is capable of attracting
this and using it for something good, to increase the welfare
of this world, the welfare and well-being of the world,
that man has a hold on the money-power, that is to say,
the force that is behind money.
In French we call money "argent". "Argent"
is also the name of a white metal which is just a little
more... a little prettier and a little more lasting than
other metals, one which is less easily oxidised and spoilt.
So this is called "argent", money. And
then, by expansion, all that is wealth is also called "argent".
It is really paper or gold or sometimes just written things...
because many large fortunes are only numbers written on
paper, not even these papers which circulate, only books!
There are immense fortunes which govern the world and are
just written on papers, like that, with some documents and
conventions between men. The fortune may increase, become
triple, fourfold, tenfold, or else it may be reduced to
nothing. They sell everything, they sell cotton, they sell
sugar, they sell corn, coffee, anything at all, but there
is nothing! There is no cotton, no sugar, no corn, nothing.
Everything is on paper! And so you buy millions of worth
of cotton: you don't have a wisp of cotton there! It is
all on paper. And so, sometimes later, you sell it off again.
If the price of cotton has increased, you gain a fortune,
if it has gone down you lose a fortune. And you have with
you neither money nor cotton nor anything, nothing but paper.
"Laughter"... It is entirely a convention.
- The Mother