Pavitra's Notebook
Page 5

Monday, May 17, 1926

This week was a little better than the former ones; the mind and vital were more submissive and the meditation more easy. But nothing new or particular. At times, when the mind is quite calm, it gives me the feeling of transparency, like a...jelly.

A Jelly?

That is the word which best expresses what I mean.

Does the mind remain immobile of itself, without your putting pressure on it?

No, not yet; but there is, however, an automatic inner movement which puts me as observer before my mind...

This calm is necessary before calling down something higher, so as not to be disturbed by the invasion of thoughts.

Monday, May 24, 1926

The difficulty always comes from the mechanical part of the mind, it clings to everything it can find: small things of daily life, books, purchases, etc., and embroiders and builds upon these data. Nevertheless, there is a certain progress in the way I look at its activity; it seems more external.

You will not be able to free yourself completely from this mechanical activity until you have accomplished the transformation of the physical. Till then you will be able to stop it at will, during meditation, for instance. You will see it as outside yourself and have a certain influence on its line of unfoldment; but you won't be entirely free from it.

I suppose I take too great an interest in these things: that is what enables my mind to get fastened to them. The highest parts of my mind have fallen silent: I no longer have any interest in spiritual books, like the Bhagavad-Gita or others. Only this mechanical part remains active.

Because this is the most difficult to handle. Moreover, the physical consciousness always takes interest in these things. And even if they were not in you, they fill the surrounding atmosphere. Unless one follows the Sannyasins, one must fight like you.
But this is rather a negative thing and one must not attach too great an importance to it. A positive experience is more important; that is, either the deep calm or the light from above. And these will quite naturally remove the rest of this mechanical activity. You must aim at this.

Is there a centre near the heart?

No. All the centres are in a straight line. That which is called "the heart centre" is at the solar plexus. Manipura is behind the navel. They are joined to the vertebral column.

Steiner speaks, besides the solar plexus, of the heart centre.

That is a mistake.

My body feels the effects of the heat. These days I was tired. Also, I did my meditation lying down. Is there any objection to that?

You can meditate in any position whatever. I meditate often whilst walking.

You spoke about going out "in the vital body" and "in the mental body". What does the latter phrase mean?

When the vital body leaves the physical, the latter remains in trance, but if it is only the mind, this does not happen. The mind leaves, for instance, in meditation, and goes on a visit to certain places or certain planes. It can observe things there and even make itself felt. It is not even the whole mind which goes out thus, but a central portion, so to say. There are no dangers as of trance. If you are awakened, the mind comes back immediately without danger. It is not the same if the vital itself has gone out. A link ties it to the physical. As it is the life, if this thread is cut, death results. An abrupt recall is also dangerous.

As a rule, it is better to acquire a certain experience of the mental going-out and a mental knowledge of the planes before attempting the exit in the vital body.

So in this yoga the going-out in the mental body precedes that in the vital body?

Yes, but both these are yet subordinate to the spiritual experience which is much more important.

I understand that the spiritual experience is fundamental and that the rest is necessary simply because the perfection must be reached on all the planes.

Monday, May 31, 1926

My meditation is becoming deeper and more detached from the external world. At certain times I succeed in watching myself thinking. Thought does not yet seem to me as external; but I can nevertheless consider this activity as objective. I am also quite aware that thought is an altogether superficial activity and that it does not affect the deeper layers of my being but remains on the surface.
When the meditation becomes deep, my feet start aching.

What kind of sensation do you have?

At the same time like a pressure and a pulling out. Is it perhaps the vital being rising up to separate itself?

It may be that, or possibly it is a modification which is generally produced when the divine force transforms gradually even the physical substance. This substance is impure and cannot receive the impulsion without a previous transformation.

Is it the physical matter itself which changes or the life of this matter?

It is a cellular modification found above all within the vital and mental parts of the cells; but even physical matter shares in it.

In my meditations there are several inner attitudes which I can take and each one generates certain vital currents.

What attitudes, for instance?

I can try to take the stand of witness of the mental activity; I can attempt to climb higher and hold fast to the uppermost position of my being. I can call the force down. In my last meditations, for instance, it was not above the head that I was centred but behind the solar plexus, in the depth and not on the height.

It is the region of the psychic being which is behind the "heart" (solar plexus). Here is one of the occult centres and it is this one that governs the ordinary man. You must also become conscious in the one above the head whence the central being governs everything.

But are not all these currents conflicting? I produce them blindly without knowing their effects. Which of these attitudes is good?

All. All this is good. You must only watch what happens. The solar centre and that in the head must cooperate in the perfect mastery of the instruments. Each has its role.

Should this attitude of witness of mental changes be held in all circumstances of ordinary life? At present, in these conditions I can manage only less important, semi-automatic activities. As soon as a certain attention is necessary, I get lost once again in action.

But this is not indispensable. It is a question of habit. You have not yet conquered the illusion which sees you as the doer. Naturally this witness attitude is necessary, it is a first step. All the parts of the mind can thus be made automatic. And from above one watches them, one can stop or modify them.

It is then a perfect mastery of the instruments. But in me this automatic activity is not yet sufficiently developed and I can entrust to it only less important tasks. Though there is already a progress in this.

Monday, June 7, 1926

There are cycles in my meditations: good periods and others when it is more difficult. At present I can quieten the mind quite well, detach myself from it and try to penetrate into a region which I feel above it. My mind now seems to me like a small portion of my real being. But there is above me a sort of veil which will not yield and which prevents me from going through. And when I succeed in thus quietening the mind and trying to penetrate it, I am aware of a pain, or rather of a sensation in the legs and feet, which thenceforth draws the attention of my being. I cannot separate myself from it, for the more efforts I make, the stronger does this sensation become.

There are parts in your physical consciousness which hold you back. You may be conscious of them or not. But when you try to pierce the veil, they hold you back. You are not ready. Also, it is necessary for the force from above to descend and prepare your lower consciousness. This veil may be crossed from below; but that is more difficult and everybody cannot do it. But if the force descends from above, it can remove it. Hence, to open yourself to this force is the first necessity.

It means then that I should take a passive attitude and not try to centre my consciousness above.

The aim naturally is to lift yourself above the mind, but the force must prepare what is not ready. Even if the mind is calm, these imperfections hold you back.

What is the difference between the psychic being behind the heart-centre and the central being above the head? Are they two beings or one single being?

Naturally, from one point of view, they are one. But your being, though one, is composed of many distinct beings. Just as your mental being is different from your physical or vital beings, so the psychic being, the soul, is different from the central being.

The psychic being is the transmitter which receives the light and transmits it to the lower personality. It is that which remains at the back and governs the personality. The psychic being is in direct communication with the truth, which it organises and transmits to the outer being. The central being cannot organise the truth: it is above all evolution. It is the psychic being which develops spiritually through the different personalities.

It is then the central being which is above space and time and behind that which evolves through the successive personalities?

Yes. The psychic being is only the soul which develops, which holds and prepares the personality. The central being has no direct action; it presides and watches.

Yesterday evening I dined at the Xs. I narrated how the house of C. S. had burnt down. Mme. X began to think over this accident. Suddenly she felt a very unpleasant emanation which she described as being reddish-brown, nauseating. Indeed, I too had an unpleasant feeling. Then I returned home and went out again to the sea-side. Suddenly I was aware of the same unpleasant sensation. It was as if some entity was trying to bring about something evil. And I felt that I had to remain attentive, on my guard. By keeping the contact with my inner being, I was able to reject that easily.

She has as a matter of fact written about it, this morning. Mme. X is very sensitive to these influences. But there is no reason for you to become so, for you are not yet ready to work on the physical plane. It is infinitely better not to enter into contact with them but reject them.

It is probable that she has no connection with C.S.'s affairs; but all these influences hold together and to think of one calls up others.

Is it not an imagination?

No, there was probably nothing imaginative in it. But you ought not to have anything to do with these forces. Throw them off vehemently, far away from you.

I did not try to enter into contact with them.
Some days ago, I dreamt that someone raised up a snake with his stick. Then he told me: take care, don't move, this snake is venomous. So I remained still, and the snake passed by my side without touching me.

It was a warning. But there is no need to stir up snakes with sticks.

Contd. Page 6

-Sri Aurobindo

Let the divine doors swing wide open for him who is not attached,
who increases in himself the Truth.
- Sri Aurobindo